Put Your 3D Printing Skills to the Test at First Ever Additive Manufacturing Hackathon

Additive Manufacturing or 3D Printing has had a huge amount of hype in the last few years and in many cases has not lived up to expectation. This is because it is not a miracle manufacturing method for making anything and everything, but a different way of making things that has reached a maturity where for certain applications it is commercially viable. However, as with all manufacturing methods, design for manufacture is crucial. Understanding how that method works is key to that. For more information on how the different types of additive manufacturing work, interesting articles and webinars check out the new section on the SOLIDWORKS website at https://www.solidworks.com/am.

To put some of this theory into practice why not attend the….

When designing and manufacturing load-bearing production parts with additive manufacturing (AM) or 3D-printing, designers and manufacturers are facing many challenges including how to trade off the strength and stiffness and in-service performances with part weight given the freedom from subtractive manufacturing constraints; how to design organic and hollow structures such as the lattice structures that are now printable with AM; how to consider new design constraints and requirements, such as overhang and support structures; how to reduce part distortion during printing process and close the gap between as-designed and as-manufactured parts.

Dassault Systèmes is glad to announce that we are hosting our first ever Additive Manufacturing Hackathon in Chicago from May 15th – May 17th. For those of you who love design challenges and can only learn by hacking your designs and seeing them come to life this event is a perfect fit for you. All hardware and software will be provided to the attendees. We will announce Hackathon winners (and awards) during our annual users’ conference: Science in the Age of Experience. The conference runs parallel to the AM Hackathon.

Attendees will be provided four design challenges to choose from. Let’s have a look at one of them in slightly more detail.

Design an Aircraft Sensor Assembly: An aircraft sensor assembly, as shown in Figure 1, is examined and to be re-designed with the goal to obtain a stiff but light-weight structure. In service, the sensor, which is the tubular, blue structure in Figure 1: Aircraft sensor assembly Figure 2: Sensor and supporting ‘wing’ Figure 2, is subjected to airflow, attached to a ‘wing-like’ support structure, marked in red in Figure 2.

You will have to develop a lattice structure to stiffen the interior of the ‘wing’ (the red region in Figures 2 and 3), through which the sensor tube is attached to the fuselage. The sensor itself and the fuselage attachment bracket are non-design region, meaning they remain unchanged. Within the design, you must reserve a small duct to allow for cables to pass from the sensor into the aircraft. This duct may be lined, creating a tube as in Figure 3, or it may just be a cylindrical void region.

We’ve taken a first pass at it already. Perhaps you get something as in the image below, or surprise us with some more imaginative, organic. Don’t forget though it has to be functional.

If you are up the challenge of designing and then making the part, then join us. Adaptiv Corporation is sponsoring the event with a Markforged Mark 2 printer. So you might just walk out with a prototype as bragging rights. And if you win, then a bigger award awaits you.

To register for the Hackathon go here: https://www.3ds.com/events/science-in-the-age-of-experience/registration/ or contact Samantha Lindsay: Samantha.LINDSAY@3ds.com.

Mark Rushton

Mark Rushton is a Product Portfolio Manager for SOLIDWORKS and has been involved with 3D CAD and 3D Printing for over 15 years in several capacities from research to consulting for the likes of Rolls Royce, GE, JCB and Dyson. When not playing with 3D printers or other tech, he is most likely out snowboarding, wake boarding or mountain biking.