3D printing has come a long way from the days back when it was just a concept. You can buy a small one for your home for just a few hundred dollars while massive 3D printers have also been developed to print large items. General Electric has revealed that it’s developing a massive 3D printer which it’s going to use for printing jet engine parts.
GE is already 3D printing aviation parts for its customers. GE Aviation is 3D printing fuel nozzles for jet enginers that are used in Boeing and Airbus aircraft as well as narrow-body jets.
The GE group has added a new business to its ranks called GE Additive. The company calls it “the world’s largest laser-powered 3D printer.” The printer will be able to create parts that fit within one cubic meter of space.
Mohammad Ehteshami of GE Additive said in a statement that this printer is going to be used for 3D printing aviation parts that are suitable for making jet engine structural components as well as parts for single-aisle aircraft. “It will also be applicable for manufacturers in the automotive, power, and oil and gas industries,” he added.
The printer is going to get the job done by fusing fine layers of powdered metal with a laser beam. It could make the process for making complex jet engine parts easier and more cost-effective compared to the traditional methods of casting and welding.