Researchers from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) signed a strategic partnership with Autodesk, an American multinational software corporation in order to explore several methods of 3D printing advanced materials. LLNL and Autodesk are set to work cooperatively to study microstructures and 3D printing complex materials.
“As an organization that is pushing the limits on generative design and high-performance computing, Autodesk is an ideal collaborator as we investigate next-generation manufacturing,” announced Anantha Krishnan, LLNL associate engineering director.
With Autodesk’s sophisticated computing software, the two organizations will implement technologies including additive manufacturing, material modeling and architected design in their joint project to attempt to rearrange extremely small materials at nano-scale levels.
“The difference in the design method we are proposing versus historically is that many of the previous manufacturing constraints can be eliminated. Additive manufacturing provides the opportunity for unprecedented breakthroughs in new structures and new material properties for a wide range of applications,” explained LLNL materials engineer and co-principal investigator Eric Duos.
Autodesk and LLNL have selected next-generation protective helmets as a test case for their technology collaboration. Through the manipulation of 3D printed nano structures and materials, the two organizations will enhance the performance and efficiency of lightweight structured objects to improve its shock absorption.
“One of the important things we hope to gain from this CRADA is to know what a great helmet design looks like, and we aim to build and test components of those helmet designs,” said Mark Davis, Autodesk senior director of design research.
Engineers and researchers will focus on rearranging and transforming complex nano structures of materials to dissipate more energy and shock compared to other helmets and pads commercially available today.
The two organizations will test their creations in industries and sports that may need lightweight structured objects like football, baseball and biking.