Oak Ridge National Laboratory

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Primary Location Oak Ridge, Tennessee, United States

Oak Ridge National Laboratory is the world’s premier research institution, empowering leaders and teams to pursue breakthroughs in an environment marked by operational excellence and engagement with the communities where we live and work. As the US Department of Energy’s largest multi-disciplinary laboratory, we deliver scientific discoveries and technical breakthroughs to realize solutions for complex challenges including the transition to clean energy, mitigation of climate change, improvements to human health, and innovation that strengthens economic competitiveness. We play a pivotal role in building a clean, efficient, flexible, and secure energy future. Our scientists work with many of America’s best innovators and businesses to research, develop, and deploy cutting-edge technologies and to break down market barriers in sustainable transportation, smart power systems, and energy efficiency for homes, buildings, and manufacturing.

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NREL To Lead New Lab Consortium To Enable High-Volume Manufacturing of Electrolyzers and Fuel Cells

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✍️ Author: Sara Havig

πŸ”– Topics: Roll-to-Roll

🏒 Organizations: Argonne National Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Sandia National Laboratories

The Roll-to-Roll (R2R) Consortium is a new national laboratory consortium with a mission to advance efficient, high-throughput, and high-quality manufacturing methods and processes to accelerate domestic manufacturing and reduce the cost of durable, high-performance proton exchange membrane fuel cell and electrolyzer systems.

The R2R Consortium is led by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and includes Argonne National Laboratory (ANL), Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and Sandia National Laboratories.

High-throughput manufacturing of fuel cells and water electrolyzers is critical for achieving widespread deployment of low-cost, clean hydrogen technologies. Roll-to-roll manufacturing of materials can increase efficiency, reduce material waste, and improve cost, but there are challenges related to materials synthesis, coating, drying, and quality control that need to be addressed to scale up these processes for industry adoption.

Read more at NREL

A novel additive manufacturing compression overmolding process for hybrid metal polymer composite structures

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✍️ Authors: Deepak Kumar Pokkalla, Ahmed Arabi Hassen, David Nuttall

πŸ”– Topics: Additive Manufacturing

🏒 Organizations: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Metal polymer composites combining low density, high strength composites with highly ductile and tough metals have gained traction over the last few decades as lightweight and high-performance materials for industrial applications. However, the mechanical properties are limited by the interfacial bonding strength between metals and polymers achieved through adhesives, welding, and surface treatment processes. In this paper, a novel manufacturing process combining additive manufacturing and compression molding to obtain hybrid metal polymer composites with enhanced mechanical properties is presented. Additive manufacturing enabled deposition of polymeric material with fibers in a predetermined pattern to form tailored charge or preform for compression molding. A grade 300 maraging steel triangular lattice is first fabricated using AddUp FormUp350 laser powder bed system and compression overmolded with additively manufactured long carbon fiber-reinforced polyamide-6,6 (40% wt. CF/PA66) preform. The fabricated hybrid metal polymer composites showed high stiffness and tensile strength. The stiffness and failure characteristics determined from the uniaxial tensile tests were correlated to a finite element model within 20% deviation. Fractographic analyses was performed using microscopy to investigate failure mechanisms of the hybrid structures.

Read more at Additive Manufacturing Letters

Metal steam turbine blade shows cutting-edge potential for critical, large 3D-printed parts

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πŸ”– Topics: Additive Manufacturing, 3D Printing

🏒 Organizations: Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Siemens, Lincoln Electric

Researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory became the first to 3D-print large rotating steam turbine blades for generating energy in power plants. Led by partner Siemens Technology, the U.S. research and development hub of Siemens AG, the project demonstrates that wire arc additive manufacturing is viable for the scalable production of critical components exceeding 25 pounds. These parts have traditionally been made using casting and forging facilities that have mostly moved abroad.

While the wait for large castings and forgings has decreased to seven or eight months, ORNL was able to print the blade in 12 hours. Including machining, a blade can be finished in two weeks, Kulkarni said. Although wire arc is a prominent 3D-printing technology, it had not previously been used to make a rotating component of this scale.

Read more at Oak Ridge National Lab News

Scalable in situ non-destructive evaluation of additively manufactured components using process monitoring, sensor fusion, and machine learning

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✍️ Authors: Zackary Snow, Luke Scime, Amirkoushyar Ziabari, Brian Fisher, Vincent Paquit

πŸ”– Topics: Additive Manufacturing, Quality Assurance, Nondestructive Test

🏒 Organizations: Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Raytheon

Laser Powder Bed Fusion (L-PBF) Additive Manufacturing (AM) is among the metal 3D printing technologies most broadly adopted by the manufacturing industry. However, the current industry qualification paradigm for critical-application L-PBF parts relies heavily on expensive non-destructive inspection techniques, which significantly limits the use-cases of L-PBF. In situ monitoring of the process promises a less expensive alternative to ex situ testing, but existing sensor technologies and data analysis techniques struggle to detect sub-surface flaws (e.g., porosity and cracking) on production-scale L-PBF printers. In this work, an in situ NDE (INDE) system was engineered to detect subsurface flaws detected in X-Ray Computed Tomography (XCT) directly from process monitoring data. A multilayer, multimodal data input allowed the INDE system to detect numerous subsurface flaws in the size range of 200–1000 Β΅m using a novel human-in-the-loop annotation procedure. Furthermore, a framework was established for generating probability-of-detection (POD) and probability-of-false-alarm (PFA) curves compliant with NDE standards by systematically comparing instances of detected subsurface flaws to post-build XCT data. We also introduce for the first time in the AM in situ sensing literature the flaw size corresponding to a 90% detection rate on the lower 95% confidence interval of the POD curve. The INDE system successfully demonstrated POD capabilities commensurate with traditional NDE methods. Traditional ML performance metrics were also shown to be inadequate for assessing the ability of the INDE system’s flaw detection performance. It is the belief of the authors that future studies should adopt the POD and PFA approach outlined here to provide better insight into the utility of process monitoring for AM.

Read more at Additive Manufacturing

Spirit AeroSystems, Oak Ridge National Laboratory Sign Memorandum of Understanding to Create Strategic Partnership

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πŸ”– Topics: Partnership, Materials Science

🏒 Organizations: Spirit AeroSystems, Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Spirit AeroSystems, Inc. today announced a strategic agreement with the Oak Ridge National Laboratory Manufacturing Demonstration Facility, which is managed by University of Tennessee Battelle, for the development of applications hypersonic travel and aircraft of tomorrow.

Spirit and Oak Ridge National Laboratory will jointly focus on scalable, efficient manufacturing of advanced material solutions in the commercial, defense and space aerostructure markets. They will collaboratively explore advances in high temperature in-situ process monitoring techniques and predictive modeling capability for microstructure-based performance and certification of carbon and ceramic composites as well as additively manufactured alloys. In addition, research teams will study various processing techniques for materials that can withstand extreme heat and harsh environments, including the scaling up of a thermal protection system for aerospace platforms.

Read more at Spirit AeroSystems News

Material Manufacturing: New Weld Wire Reduces Failures from Hydrogen Damage

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✍️ Author: Seth Clark

πŸ”– Topics: Welding

🏒 Organizations: Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Oak Ridge National Laboratories, along with several other federal agencies, has developed a new alloy for welding applications in hopes of improving weld strength. While there are few details on the specifics of the new alloy, the welding wires created aim to reduce the effectiveness of hydrogen attack along welds.

The mechanisms of hydrogen damage are not well understood, but there are two common pathways in which hydrogen can lead to or further cracking in alloys. The localized cracking leads to a weak spot in the component, which will eventually lead to failure of the component, often below expected stress values.

Read more at Control Automation

The role of temperature on defect diffusion and nanoscale patterning in graphene

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✍️ Authors: Ondrej Dyck, Sinchul Yeom, Sarah Dillender, Andrew R. Lupini, Mina Yoon, Stephen Jesse

πŸ”– Topics: Materials Science

🏒 Organizations: Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Princeton University

Jesse said, β€œIt heals locally, like the (fictitious) liquid-metal T-1000 in Terminator 2: Judgment Day.”

Graphene is of great scientific interest due to a variety of unique properties such as ballistic transport, spin selectivity, the quantum hall effect, and other quantum properties. Nanopatterning and atomic scale modifications of graphene are expected to enable further control over its intrinsic properties, providing ways to tune the electronic properties through geometric and strain effects, introduce edge states and other local or extended topological defects, and sculpt circuit paths. The focused beam of a scanning transmission electron microscope (STEM) can be used to remove atoms, enabling milling, doping, and deposition. Utilization of a STEM as an atomic scale fabrication platform is increasing; however, a detailed understanding of beam-induced processes and the subsequent cascade of aftereffects is lacking. Here, we examine the electron beam effects on atomically clean graphene at a variety of temperatures ranging from 400 to 1000 Β°C. We find that temperature plays a significant role in the milling rate and moderates competing processes of carbon adatom coalescence, graphene healing, and the diffusion (and recombination) of defects. The results of this work can be applied to a wider range of 2D materials and introduce better understanding of defect evolution in graphite and other bulk layered materials.

Read more at Science Direct