Sitting right outside of Cincinnati, GE Additive is on the cutting edge in metal additive manufacturing, with applications from aviation to medicine.
G.E. Additive, part of G.E. Aviation, is transforming industry with software-defined machines and changing the way 3D printed design is viewed.
GE acquired Arcam EBM for electron beam melting, Concept Laser for laser melting, and material provider AP&C. Metal casting improves through competition with metal additive manufacturing, for which GE Additive believes it will soon compete with metal forging which will then be enhanced in response. Additive manufacturing is focused on new builds but can be used for part replacement: when complexity rise, costs stays level like replacing a 300 parts turbine frame in one-piece. The electron beam melting has good speed for economy, precision to reduce processing work, and size capability for larger parts; the hot process reduces stresses in the part and penetrates deeper than laser for thicker parts with coarser, cheaper metal powders. Additive techniques can be used across the engine and even in the over 1,500 °F (820 °C) hot section. They are used in the CT7 combustor liner, for GE9X low pressure turbine blades - the first rotating parts - and for 16 parts in the ATP, including an 80 parts heat exchanger consolidated into one.