The Royal Australian Navy is set to deploy Darwin-developed 3D printing technology in a world-first trial that is anticipated to streamline the maintenance of patrol vessels.
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The federal government confirmed the investment of $1.5 million into the two-year Supersonic Deposition 3D printer pilot, which will lead to a significant increase of parts availability compared with what the regular supply chain can provide.
Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price congratulated Charles Darwin University’s Advanced Manufacturing Alliance, along with industry partner SPEE3D, for producing the cutting-edge and uniquely Australian capability.
“This high-tech machinery enables metal components to be produced quickly and efficiently, meaning our ships can get back on the water without delay,” Minister Price said.
“Benefiting both the Navy and industry, the knowledge transfer gained using this capability also positions the Advanced Manufacturing Alliance to pursue further opportunities.
“This capability is a prime example of Australian innovation at its best and supports the government’s unprecedented shipbuilding and sustainment plans.”
Minister Price visited Charles Darwin University with chancellor Paul Henderson, AO, as part of a wider visit to Darwin this week to inspect work underway on the $1.1 billion defence infrastructure upgrades in the Top End.