The performance and thrust profile of a solid rocket motor is highly dependent on the geometry of the propellant grain. Traditional manufacturing techniques limit the geometric complexity and multimaterial tuning that can be realistically achieved in propellant grains; yet gaining more control over the construction of such grains would allow more control over the motor’s trajectory and speed. AM can potentially be used to make multimaterial structures with intricate geometries; however, commercial AM methods have not been able to 3-D print traditional solid propellant mixtures well without formulation modifications. This webinar will highlight how vibration-assisted printing has been used to directly 3-D print traditional solid propellants, ultraviolet-curable propellants, and multiformulation propellants. The presentation will also highlight several key research directions that could lead to further improvements, such as 3-D printing of dissimilar materials and using defect detection to enforce quality control of 3-D-printed energetic materials.
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