America Makes announced a new Rapid Innovation Call (RIC) worth $185K in total funding from the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), Materials and Manufacturing Directorate, Manufacturing and Industrial Base Technology Division, to advance qualification and certification (Q&C) of additive manufacturing (AM) materials, processes, and products throughout the supply chain.

“We have been encouraging our membership community to submit topic ideas for subsequent RICs,” said Brandon D. Ribic, Ph.D., America Makes Technology Director. “We received tremendous support evidence by the high number of quality suggestions. While today’s RIC announcement encompasses three topics with unique technical focuses, they share a unified goal of advancing qualification and certification as a means to removing a recognized industry barrier to the broader adoption of additive manufacturing technologies.”

This RIC will address the needs of the membership in three topic domains:

Topic 1: Characterization of Metal AM Process Surface Features
The technical focus of this project is the development and demonstration of in-situ process monitoring for metal AM surface features. The goal is to expand the industry understanding of metal AM and establish a quantitative data set to refine best practices, which will subsequently contribute to Q&C standards. As this is a Member Driven RIC, there is no cost share requirement for this project call.

Topic 2: AM Part Families for Product Qualification & Certification (Q&C)
The technical focus is to leverage existing AM data to create AM part families to increase the amount validated AM data within the public domain and develop Q&C standards. The goal is to drive broader adoption of AM in such specific industries as aerospace, medical, and aviation where Q&C of AM parts is critically needed. As this is a Government Driven RIC, this call has a cost share requirement of 25 percent.

Topic 3: Development of Test Artifacts for the Characterization of AM In-situ Process Monitoring Systems
The technical focus of this project is to use test artifacts or geometric feature sets to evaluate the performance of in-situ process monitoring in metals-based AM commercial systems. The goal is to increase AM fabrication and AM parts quality in real-time instead of quality analysis after fabrication. As this is a Government Driven RIC, this call has a cost share requirement of 25 percent.

***RIC Timeline and Details***
Launch: February 9, 2021
Eligibility: All participants (lead and sub proposers) must be America Makes members.
Informational Webinar: February 15, 2021 at 2 p.m. EST. Registration is required.
Submission Deadline: Monday, March 1, 2021 before 5 p.m. EST
Anticipated Award(s) Announcement: March 15, 2021
One award per topic is anticipated: Topic 1 $50K, Topic 2 $75K, and Topic 3 $60K

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