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Agile Pursues Certification of 6K Additive’s Ni625 Powder for Space Tech

2 Mins read
Agile Pursues Certification of 6K Additive's Ni625 Powder for Space Tech
Agile partners with 6K Additive to advance moon missions for NASA/ Source: Durango Herald

In a significant partnership focused on sustainable materials for additive manufacturing in space, Agile Space Industries and 6K Additive, a division of 6K Inc., have jointly announced their pursuit of certification for 6K Additive’s Ni625 powder. This certification aims to enable its use in critical rocket components for customer space applications.

Kyle Metsger, serving as the Director of Additive Technology at Agile Space Industries, elucidates the vital role of 6K Additive’s Ni625 powder in their aerospace endeavors. Given that a substantial 85% of engine components are additively manufactured, AM powders’ quality and reliability are paramount. These powders must withstand the extreme conditions encountered during take-off and flight. Metsger emphasizes that 6K Additive’s contribution facilitates the production of high-quality components essential for critical applications. Furthermore, this collaboration aligns with Agile’s environmental objectives, as 6K Additive’s sustainably manufactured Ni625 powder and recycling initiatives contribute to their broader sustainability strategy.

Advancing Aerospace Manufacturing with Certified Ni625 Powder

6K Additive’s Ni625 powder is currently being certified for application in Agile Space Industries’ manufacturing operations. The initial application of this certified powder will involve producing parts for Agile’s groundbreaking A2200 bipropellant hypergolic engine.

The propulsion system of the A2200 engine boasts a unique approach, being powered by a pressure-fed hypergolic bipropellant mixture. Unlike traditional ignition-dependent systems, this configuration relies on the combustion of hydrazine derivative fuel, M20, and MON3 oxidizer upon contact. Leveraging the capabilities of additive manufacturing, the A2200 engine has been meticulously designed to weigh just 5.9 kg while delivering an impressive thrust of 500-lbf. This design strategy underscores the dual advantages of weight reduction through additive manufacturing and the concurrent enhancement of power output.

Agile Pursues Certification of 6K Additive's Ni625 Powder for Space Tech
6K Additive partners with Agile Space/ Source: Agile Space Industries

Redefining Aerospace Development Timelines

Agile Space Industries stands out for its innovative approach to development timelines. While the aerospace industry often contends with decades-long development cycles, Agile leverages additive manufacturing’s agility to compress these timelines dramatically. By harnessing the speed and flexibility of AM, Agile has succeeded in reducing the development timeframe to just 12 months. This efficiency-driven approach sets a precedent in the aerospace sector, demonstrating the transformative potential of additive manufacturing in accelerating technological progress.

Also Read: Bambu Lab Announces New 3D Printing Repository ‘MakerWorld’

Kyle Metsger underscores the significance of this achievement, remarking that even a year-long development cycle can be considered lengthy in numerous industries. Nevertheless, Agile’s approach towards Ni625 powder offers a glimpse into the future of aerospace innovation, showcasing the practical benefits of additive manufacturing in reducing lead times while maintaining exceptional quality.

Advancing Lunar Exploration with Agile’s A2200 Engines

Agile’s A2200 engines, poised to be integrated into lunar lander vehicles, represent a crucial advancement in propulsion technology. Engineered to deliver peak performance during demanding missions, the A2200 engine achieves a specific impulse surpassing 318 seconds. Its integral pintle sleeve throttling mechanism enables seamless throttling from 50 to 100% thrust in under 650 milliseconds. This capability is particularly vital for precise and demanding maneuvers required during lunar missions, further underlining the innovation and adaptability of Agile’s propulsion solution

The collaboration between Agile Space Industries and 6K Additive for Ni625 powder marks a significant milestone in sustainable additive manufacturing for space applications. Utilizing Ni625 powder underscores the commitment to quality, efficiency, and environmental responsibility. Moreover, Agile’s agile development approach and 6K Additive’s innovative powder solutions collectively exemplify the future direction of aerospace engineering, emphasizing the potential for accelerated progress and sustainable practices.

About 6K: 6K has developed UniMelt®, a patented advanced microwave plasma production technology, with sustainability at its core, to transform designed materials into revolutionary products that enhance industries such as additive manufacturing, renewable energy, aerospace, consumer electronics, and more. 6K signifies 6000 degrees, the temperature at which UniMelt®, the world’s only microwave production scale plasma system, operates as well as the temperature of the sun’s surface. North Andover, Massachusetts is where 6K was formed. -Taken from the source.

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