Additively manufactured aircraft component

Added value through ligtweight design

© Fraunhofer EMI
The lightweight component manufactured using laser sintering.

The goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions boosts aviation research. The newly gained freedom of design in additive manufacturing and the potentially careful use of resources by direct generation of the structural material render this new technology particularly interesting for sustainable and light-weight aircraft components. However, the safety and reliability of all components and systems are an absolute priority in aviation. For this reason, the hurdle for the implementation of new technologies in safety-relevant, highly loaded components is high.

At EMI, we thus investigate the additive manufacturing of a high-performance aluminum material and the targeted use of new construction and optimization methods for a highly loaded fitting within the framework of the European research program Clean Sky 2 Joint Undertaking. Our objective – besides lightweight design – is to generate a particularly reliable failsafe design. As a direct reference, we use a conventional, milled component. Additive manufacturing will only be put to use if an added value is clearly evident in comparison with established technologies.