New Mexico Patent of the Month – February 2022

Additive manufacturing is a booming industry, expanding out to replace traditional manufacturing processes from small products to construction of buildings. It’s capable of producing complex shapes with less expensive materials and with less scrap rates compared to traditional ways. Of course, along with this improved manufacturing method comes the need for methods to monitor the product quality. Los Alamos National Security, LLC has developed a layer-by-layer testing process that can be performed during manufacturing.

By having the quality assurance process run during manufacturing, you reduce the amount of time spent on the whole process. You can also address problems before wasting materials on a dud. This system uses both linear and non-linear vibrational resonances to test the product. The part is manufactured on a plate with a transducer which can impart these vibrations.A laser vibrometer then detects the vibrational response of the product to identify any defects. The vibrational frequencies can be compared to standards and deviations from these standards are used to alert operators of defects. If a defect is detected, manufacture can be stopped and either corrected or restarted. 

This serves to further enhance the benefits of additive manufacturing. With this process inplace, the product can be tested as it is built.

Are you developing new technology for an existing application? Did you know your development work could be eligible for the R&D Tax Credit and you can receive up to 14% back on your expenses? Even if your development isn’t successful your work may still qualify for R&D credits (i.e. you don’t need to have a patent to qualify). To find out more, please contact a Swanson Reed R&D Specialist today or check out our free online eligibility test.

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