In partnership with the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) and GE Research, the U.S. National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute America Makes has launched a ‘direct call-to-action’ challenge to the additive manufacturing (AM) industry.
The Open Source-Additive Scanning Implementation Strategy (OASIS) Challenge, which has a prize pool of $68,000, is inviting entrants to submit innovative open-source scan strategy codes, algorithms, and methods to aid in developing laser-based powder bed AM.
“While tremendous progress has been made in this space, there are still challenges with the proprietary nature of commercial scan strategies,” said John Wilczynski, America Makes executive director. “This challenge seeks to address those issues head-on and create a body of work that can be utilized across the industry.”
Advancing open framework resources
America Makes and the AFRL have together made significant progress in developing open framework software, controls, and equipment with multi-laser metal AM. In December, the organizations announced a seven-year Cooperative Agreement (CA) in a deal worth $322 million to advance AM’s adoption.
Most recently, America Makes announced four new project calls to aid in the maturation of industrial 3D printing, addressing materials data, process monitoring, data management, education, and workforce development.
According to the Ohio-based national accelerator for AM, most commercial scan strategies for multi-laser metal AM are proprietary, making it difficult for users to understand the process fully. Therefore, development is necessary in the open-sector to aid improvement in microstructural homogeneity, surface roughness, geometric tolerance, and distortion through optimizing scan strategies.
In light of this, the OASIS Challenge is launched as a ‘direct challenge to the AM industry to advance temporal and spatial thermal management’ by submitting open-source computer codes and algorithms.
The challenge leverages a previous America Makes project that addressed developing and demonstrating an open, layered protocol for Powder Bed Fusion AM (PBF AM) to provide specification of behavior, monitoring, and control within PBF AM systems.
An informational webinar will take place on 9 September at 2 pm EDT which will review the OASIS Challenge, provide details of the documentation and offer a live Q&A session for those wishing to take part.
Participants will download data from a secure project website that they can use to produce a new pioneering scan strategy code and algorithms, and which will be evaluated with predefined code requirements. Top submissions will have samples printed in Titanium, where their material properties will be assessed and scored.
Submissions will be accepted between 1 October and 1 December, with review and scoring taking place 1 April 2021. Accepted code languages include Python, Java, C#, and C++. The entries will be evaluated on a number of criteria including part porosity, tensile strength, ductility, surface finish, geometric fidelity, code quality, and code run speed.
The first-placed submission will receive $25,500, second place will receive $15,500, and third place $10,500. A further three submissions will receive honorable mentions and $5,500 each. The awards and winners will be announced on 4 June 2021.
The results of the sample evaluation will be integrated into the America Makes National AM Roadmap, as well as the America Makes Digital Storefront.
Further information, details, and participant guidelines for the OASIS Challenge can be found here.
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Featured image shows America Makes booth #965 at RAPID 2019. Photo via America Makes.