31 May '14, 12pm

SpaceX 3D Prints Rocket Thruster | EE Times via @eetimes

PORTLAND, Ore. — No longer are 3D printers a novelty for kids, or even just a tool for prototyping, now that the world's first production rocket thruster to be qualified for space flight was certified today by Space Exploration Technologies Corp. in SpaceX, Hawthorne, Calif. According to SpaceX, 3D printing can drastically cut the cost and time of manufacturing finished parts for space vehicles and by implication for any vehicle. Will Google's next driverless car be 3D printed? The world's first rocket thruster to be fabricated on a 3-D printer was certified by SpaceX today. (Source: SpaceX) Called the SuperDraco thruster, eight will power the Dragon spacecraft for both the launch escape-from-gravity system as well as for coordinated Earth landings -- Flash Gordon -style. The Draco engines were originally designed only for maneuvering the spacecraft in orbit and to assist ...

Full article: http://www.eetimes.com/document.asp?doc_id=1322566

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