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The Future of Aerospace Engineering

Kellner, T. (2017) discusses the capability of Additive Manufacturing and how it could revolutionize the current manufacturing landscape of Aerospace Engineering. He comments on the limitations of traditional manufacturing techniques and explicates the role of technological advancement in helping eliminate such hinderances. This paper is dedicated to branding additive manufacturing as the future of additive manufacturing.

A majority of original equipment manufacturers (OEM) are leaning towards envisaging a fuel-efficient jet engine in the fast-growing industry of aerospace. Ideally, the primary attribute that would play a huge role in determining the fuel efficiency of the jet engine is the design of fuel spray nozzle. The author mentions that, traditionally, with more than 20 parts needed to be welded and brazed together, it would only bring about unnecessary complications especially with the already complex interior geometry. Solving this connection issue while maintaining minimum complications calls for the utilization of Additive Manufacturing. This technique speeds up the manufacturing process, therefore, making it more productive. Technically, it combines all the desired parts into a single unit without the need for assembly. The technique further provides the component with a significant weight reduction of up to 25 percent, and increases the durability fivefold. These attributes increase the efficiency of the jet engine a great deal. Given its practical benefits on the realms of economy, productivity, and functionality, the impact of the Additive Manufacturing Technique on the Aerospace Industry is highly validated.

The mode of operation is firstly by the use of Computer-Aided Drawing (CAD) Software where the operator can design any particular model as desired. Subsequently, the model is effortlessly transferred to the 3D-printer, where the machine begins to fuse metal powder, layer by layer, upon the finalized shape. This procedure serves to reduce the amount of waste produced, since, only a definite amount of material is required for the metal-powder fusion. In addition, the process of supply chain management is simplified, since, lesser materials used translates to smaller storage inventories, lesser costs on mass transportation, and minimal excesses on tooling. As a trend in the Aerospace Industry where precise regulations and requirements are strictly adhered to, there is need for consistency of the highest order for each and every component manufactured by the Additive Manufacturing Technique. Compared to the traditional manufacturing technique, there is much lower margin of error whilst fabricating the component by Additive Manufacturing. This error reduction is primarily due to the acquisition of greater consistency from the multi-dimensional quality management of the machines which ensures consistent grain size distribution. Finally, as mentioned earlier in this paper, complexity of the design does not only limit the options of manufactures, but it is also very costly. The utilization of additive manufacturing gives room for manufacturers to be more sophisticated and innovative. It provides them with the freedom to design ergonomically and allows rapid prototyping, owing to the fact that the component can be fabricated within hours. As compared to traditional manufacturing, any flaw in the designs of the prototype can easily be modified and manufacturers can design unique parts that are tailored to fit the need for specific uses. As a result, it gives designers the ability to create lattice structures for light-weighted parts and designs with significantly higher strength-to-weight ratios (ScienceDirect, 2015). Especially in the aerospace industry, a lighter component would translate to reduced fuel consumption and carbon emissions produced.

Additive Manufacturing is relatively still a new technique in the Aerospace Industry. Nevertheless, the benefits that it brings outweigh those of traditional methods. Ideally, it would only be reasonable for manufacturers to incline towards not having large amounts of redundant waste as this would only diminish their potential profits. In addition, capitalizing on such an advanced technology to fabricate a much more depended-upon component whilst simultaneously increasing productivity would only give manufacturers an upper hand in business. As such, if the technique were to be generalized in the whole aerospace industry, it would definitely revolutionize the current landscape.


Kellner, T. (2017). An Epiphany Of Disruption: GE Additive Chief Explains How 3D Printing Will Upend Manufacturing.

ScienceDirect. (2015). Cold-spray coatings on magnesium and its alloys. | Science, health and medical journals, full text articles and books.


Source: Kover,A. (2018). Transformation In 3D: How A Walnut-Sized Part Changed The Way GE Aviation Builds Jet Engines.


Source: CMTC. (n.a.). Additive Manufacturing | 3D Printing. (


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