Engineers are looking for higher quality metal alloys to solve design problems. Two examples of current substitution trends: Titanium is replacing copper-nickel alloys in large desalinization plants. In a separate development, metallurgical-bonded, nickel-based alloy clad pipe is replacing conventional corrosion-resistant alloy pipe in sour gas applications. The trends were reported by L. Patrick Hassey, CEO of Allegheny Technologies, in a recent conference call with analysts. Hassey retired on May 1.
The amount of plastic clogging the ocean continues to grow. Some startling, not-so-good news has come out recently about the roles plastic is playing in the ocean, as well as more heartening news about efforts to collect and reuse it.
Optomec's third America Makes project for metal 3D printing teams the LENS process company with GE Aviation, Lockheed, and other big aerospace names to develop guidelines for repairing high-value flight-critical Air Force components.
A self-propelled robot developed by a team of researchers headed by MIT promises to detect leaks quickly and accurately in gas pipelines, eliminating the likelihood of dangerous explosions. The robot may also be useful in water and petroleum pipe leak detection.
Aerojet Rocketdyne has built and successfully hot-fire tested an entire 3D-printed rocket engine. In other news, NASA's 3D-printed rocket engine injectors survived tests generating a record 20,000 pounds of thrust. Some performed equally well or better than welded parts.
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