Crossposted from the NASA blog.
NASA has always been on the cutting edge of innovation, investing time, energy and resources into the technologies of tomorrow. Technologies that can be spun-off into the private sector to help create jobs and improve the quality of life of all Americans.
With funding from NASA's Aeronautics division, engineers at NASA¹s Langley Research Center have developed a manufacturing process that has turned science fiction into science fact. The Electron Beam Freeform Fabrication, or EBF3, is a process that uses an electron beam gun, a dual wire feed and computer controls to manufacture metallic structures for building parts or tools in hours, rather than days or weeks.
NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver and Karen Taminger, the lead engineer on the Electron Beam Freeform Fabrication, or EBF3 project visiting a NASA field center holding an aircraft part made by the EBF3 during a demonstration. (Photo by NASA/Sean Smith)
The EBF3 is being used to manufacture titanium spars for vertical tails of the F-35 Joint Fight Striker. Less wasted titanium and reduced machining times result in a savings for Lockheed Martin, and ultimately the American taxpayer.