Tuesday, May 7, 2024

Using "cold spray" 3D printing to reduce the cost of fighter jet wheel replacement from $100,00 each to $300


F/A-18E/F pilots often land hard on carrier decks, causing the fighter’s main landing gear wheel rims to oblong and the tire mounted on the rim to shake. If the tire wobbles, he said, the wheel and tire assembly is taken off and discarded.

That gets expensive very quickly. “We go through 166 of these tires a year and they cost six figures apiece,”


“There wasn’t an effective way to repair [them]... We realized that eighty percent of those rims are repairable with cold spray technology.”