GE (NYSE:GE) today unveiled ten Phase I finalists from its Jet Engine Bracket Design Quest. This design Quest invited individuals, companies and institutions to redesign loading brackets found on jet engines using 3D printing. A critical component of a jet engine, brackets support the weight of the engine during handling and must withstand significant vibrations during flight.
Additive manufacturing has the potential to reduce the weight of a single aircraft engine by one thousand pounds and drive substantial reduction in fuel consumption. The Quest combines the power of additive manufacturing with open innovation and seeks design solutions which will not only reduce the bracket weight but also improve its strength and performance.
Mark Little, Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, GE Global Research Center said, “We have entered into a new era of manufacturing that is leveraging the proven power of open innovation. Additive manufacturing is allowing GE, together with the Maker community, to push the boundaries of traditional engineering. These finalists have demonstrated what can be achieved by embracing this more open, collaborative model.”
The Quest, which launched in June 2013, drew a record number of design entries via the GrabCAD platform’s community of entrepreneurs, institutions and companies. Each finalist will receive $1,000 and move on to the second phase, in which the jet engine bracket designs will be additively manufactured and subjected to load testing by GE."The GE Quest has been one our most successful challenges, in terms of number of entrants, technical sophistication of submissions and quality of results", said Hardi Meybaum, CEO of GrabCAD."It’s been great watching the community exploit the advantages of additive manufacturing in such a demanding application." Located around the world, finalists include:
- Ármin Fendrik, based in Hungary, is a third-year university student and this entry is among his first 3D printing designs.
- Thomas Johansson, Ph.D, based in Sweden, is a consultant for a Swedish hyper-car manufacturer and is a champion snowmobile drag racer.
- Nic Adams, based in Australia, supported the installation of a pathology lab automation system in a Sydney hospital, which includes a robotic handling system that helps analyze hundreds of test tubes each day.
- M Arie Kurniawan, based in Indonesia, is co-founder of an engineering firm that provides high quality mechanical engineering, design optimization and product design services.
- Sebastien Vavassori, based in the United Kingdom, is a stress engineer for a leading European space manufacturer and service provider.
- Piotr Mikulski, based in Poland, works as a rapid prototyping systems specialist for a Polish-Swiss joint-venture that provides industrial and machining services.
- Andreas Anedda , based in Italy, is a postgraduate university student and holds three patents.
- Alexis Costa is based in France.
- Mandli Peter is based in Hungary.
- Fidel Chirtes is based in Romania.