Future Trends

HII-Led Partnership Produces 3D-Printed Part for Nuclear Submarine

Additive manufacturing


HII-Led Partnership Produces 3D-Printed Part for Nuclear Submarine

General Dynamics Electric Boat, HII’s Newport News Shipbuilding division and Oregon-based AMMCON have developed a copper-nickel deck drain assembly using additive manufacturing, also called 3D printing.

The companies aim to incorporate the technology into the construction of nuclear-powered submarines for the U.S. Navy. Additive manufacturing could speed up submarine delivery by reducing lead time for key components, HII said.

The part’s production is the result of a project to improve the availability of marine-based alloy alternatives to traditional copper-nickel castings.

NNS partnered with AMMCON to create a model and proof of concept. AMMCON is now handling the final machining and assembly before installation on the Virginia-class submarine Oklahoma.

According to AMMCON President Darrell Grow, his company is a long-time supplier of nuclear-powered submarine components.

Dave Bolcar, NNS president of engineering and design, noted that the effort is supported by Navy authorizations that optimized requirements for low-risk additive manufacturing parts.

In March, the Naval Sea Systems Command granted NNS clearance to use additive manufacturing to make metal parts for Navy vessels.

Category: Future Trends