Proposals should consider the current state-of-the-art including additive manufacturing systems, materials and material properties. Additionally, the entire additive manufacturing process should be taken into acount in order to evaluate and classify the planned activities within a project.
Proposals are generally intended:
- To improve the understanding of the investigated AM-processes
- To further develop the manufacturing technology
- To evaluate the potential compared to other solutions
- To improve the performance of the products, processes or operations addressed by the proposal
For the previously mentioned areas, this means:
A Additive Manufactured Electronics (AME)
To increase the level of integration regarding electronics and RF-components, multiple physical functions should be integrated in multi-functional parts using AM, e.g. mechanical, thermal and especially the electric function.
Due to the potential design freedom AME can merge mechanical and electrical functions in one multifunctional structure. Future designs could handle concurrent requirements regarding weight reduction, increased complexity, rapid manufacturing and reduced environmental impact.
Challenging factors to get AME in use at defence level are manufacturing process maturity, definition of material properties and population technologies (e.g. soldering, multi-layering). Additionally the ability to create these functional designs is equaly important. Therefore, the education of engineers and definition of design guidelines are therefore the key to implement AME successfully.
B Additive Manufacturing of Advanced Ammunition
Different types of ammunition may be investigated e.g. kinetic projectiles, shaped charges, grenades or high and hypervelocity ammunition. The specialized materials must be characterized and tested with respect to their intended use, e.g. high-density materials needed for kinetic projectiles.
To improve and adopt the behaviour of ammunition items energetic materials may be additively manufactured to affect the time-dependent energy conversion. To affect fragmentation gradients in the material properties within a shell may be investigated as well as a complex design of ammunition bodies/shells. To affect propulsion, complex shaped propellant grains may be investigated.
The quality and accuracy of the AM-process and the AM-processed materials should receive special attention.
C Additive Manufacturing for Protection
To increase protection different combinations of materials and technologies may be used at each stage of manufacturing process. Different densities, internals structures of components should be considered here, e.g. to optimize the protection quality /mass ratio. AM may be used to exclusively manufacture or just perform the modifications of the existing parts. Multimateriality and multifunctionality of the parts may be additionally implemented.
D Additive Manufacturing for Lightweight Structural Parts
Lightweight structures are to be realized addressing both aspects, an optimal distribution of the material as well as improved (weigh-specific) material properties. Therefore, complex designs are to be addressed as well as the use of new materials. Due to the typically low safety factors used for many lightweight applications, special attention should be paid to process and material quality as well as an substantial database, which should be built up for the processed materials.