GE Builds Tiny 3-D Printed Jet Engine (Video)

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AskBob's picture
GE Builds Tiny 3-D Printed Jet Engine (Video)

 Engineers at General Electric have created a tiny jet engine using 3-D printing techniques that they say could rewrite the rules for how components inside commercial turbine engines are produced.

The mini jet engine project was completed at GE Aviation's Additive Development Center outside Cincinnati. The lab focuses on developing additive manufacturing techniques that can produce complex 3-D structures by melting metal powders and laying them in super thin layers until something miraculous emerges.
In this case it was a foot-long jet engine, complete with fan blades and internal compressor, that they built over the course of "several years" to test the technique's capabilities.

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jseiler's picture

It may not be that far off that parts procurement is as easy as downloading the part specifications from the OEM and printing them locally on your printer. Interesting to envision the GA aftermarket when this occurs - a lot smaller inventories for one. But, the impacts would be very wide ranging -- whole new business models, regulations, and skill sets.

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