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NASA tests small scale “3D Printed” engine injector
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Last week NASA tested a small rocket engine with vital components made by the process of Selective Laser Sintering – a form of 3D printing for metal.

NASA tested the small rocket engine fuelled by liquid oxygen and gaseous hydrogen last week to test an additively-manufactured injector plate – the part that sits on top of the combustion chamber and is responsible for forcing both oxidiser and fuel into the engine in the right quantities to support steady combustion.

Since an injector plate is essentially a 3d maze of plumbing, it is an ideal candidate for additive manufacturing, allowing it to be made as a single component instead of a jigsaw of hundreds of others  NASA has hinted that using such a means for making full scale injector plates for spaceworthy vehicles would reduce costs by 70% and slash the time needed from one year to four months.

Image: NASA Glenn Research Center

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About The Author
AstroAggregator
My name's Chris Pounds. I started Astronomy Aggregator in 2012 as a hobby site for my interests in spaceflight and astronomy. I'm finishing up an MSc. in Aerospace Engineering. My undergraduate degree was in Mechanical Engineering with a final year dissertation focussed on performance characteristics of aerospike rocket nozzles.

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