Carderock Division is the US Navy's research, engineering, modelling and test centre for ships and ship systems. It is one of the largest establishments of its kind in the world, serving a dual role in support of both our US naval forces and the maritime industry.
Navy and maritime communities have come to depend on its expertise and innovative spirit in developing advanced platforms and systems, enhancing naval performance, reducing operating costs and addressing the Navy's evolving mission.
This initial validation program was centred on printing an unclassified scale nose of a submarine using Thermwood’s LSAM additive manufacturing system. The part was printed using 20% carbon fibre filled ABS in 11 hours and 45 minutes using traditional horizontal layer printing and a 40mm melt core. Final trim required 5 hours. Both printing and trimming were completed on the same machine, using Thermwood’s 10’ x 20’ LSAM at its demonstration lab in Southern Indiana.
Because of layer cooling requirements, the print rate for this part was less than half of the maximum rate the machine is capable of. It is expected that, moving forward, this program will include the printing of additional components using both horizontal and vertical layer printing.
LSAM is intended for industrial production. It is not a lab, evaluation or demonstration machine, but is instead a full-fledged industrial additive manufacturing system intended for the production of large scale components.
Much of the technology used in Thermwood's LSAM machines and print process is completely new. Thermwood has already received numerous patents on this development and many more are in the works. Many results that LSAM has already achieved are covered by non-disclosure agreements and must be kept secret.