August 2023

Momentumheader2023 Scaled
Product Update

RAM technology is solving the Navy’s need for a reliable AM-ready high temperature material

Ni230-Ram1 Parts

As of August 2023, Elementum 3D is halfway through a two-year Phase II SBIR project funded by the US Navy. The first year laid the groundwork for a viable solution to the SBIR objective: secure the ability to print reliable, high performance nickel-based spare parts and components in short lead times to repair and maintain critical equipment and readiness. The challenge is to develop a computational modeling framework for rapid alloy development and testing or maximizing alloy printability and performance.

In collaboration with Colorado School of Mines researchers, Elementum 3D recently developed a solidification model that facilitates to rapid development of its Reactive Additive Manufacturing (RAM) formulations for highly printable and superior nickel superalloys. The model includes the effect of RAM-formed inoculants to predict the extent of cracking during printing. The initial application of the model was to solve cracking issues in Alloy 230, and the resulting formulation (Ni230-RAM1) showed no cracking and 60% higher yield strength than wrought Alloy 230. Currently, primes can’t supply crack-free high-temperature nickel superalloys for AM because without RAM, they don’t exist. Elementum 3D’s RAM technology enables new application pathways for additive manufactured components where lower strength, traditional wrought material can’t be used.

Additional advantages of the RAM-based solidification model:

  • Reduction of cost and lead time to produce replacement components and spares by 1.5-2x.
  • Highly printable, crack-free, fully dense, and often stronger that wrought material.
  • 6x elongation at break compared to unmodified printed Alloy 230.
  • 7x longer creep life than unmodified printed Alloy 230 and comparable to wrought creep performance.
  • More robust supply chain through distributed production.
  • Expansion of range of printable nickel materials to inspire innovative applications.
  • Increased component efficiency and performance at higher operating temperature
Alloy 230 Comparison Chart

AM-ready high temperature materials, such as Ni230-RAM1 are targeted towards mission-critical applications in government, aerospace, space, and marine systems where performance, lead time, and resilience are at a premium. The defense sector urgently needs innovative AM feedstock materials to maintain legacy equipment, enable new and powerful propulsion, energy generation, weapons platforms, and structural systems and components.

The RAM process has expanded the library of high-performance AM materials. These products deliver fast and flexible AM capability to the supply chain while improving materials performance compared to traditional manufacturing. Other industries requiring exact materials property ranges for mission-critical projects with repeatability and access to large quantities of feedstock are proving out the success of the RAM approach, and Elementum 3D is currently supplying an automotive customer with over 20 tons of feedstock per year.

Recently, Elementum 3D joined the Navy’s SBIR Transition Program (STP) to connect with Navy stakeholders in urgent need of printable high-performance alloys. Ni230-RAM1 is already available for testing and producing real world components!

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Daniel Edwards, IT Support

Noah Wieber, AM Technician I (rehire)

Upcoming events


FORMNEXT – November 7-10  |  Frankfurt, Germany  |  Booth 11.1-C62

Jamie Perozzi

VP of Technology 6K Additive

Mr. Perozzi has 20+ years of specialty metals experience with a focus on process, new product development, product management, and application engineering. Before joining 6K, Perozzi spent seven years at AMETEK Specialty Metal Products responsible for quality and process engineering. Prior to Ametek, he spent 10 years at Hitachi Metals – Metglas and 3 years at J&L Specialty Steel. Perozzi holds a BS Metallurgical Engineering degree from Penn State University.

Dr. Timothy Smith

Materials Research Engineer NASA Glenn Research Center

Tim Smith graduated with a PhD in materials science and engineering from Ohio State University in 2016. After graduating, his pathways internship at NASA Glenn research center became a full-time position. His research focuses on high temperature alloy development and characterization. He has contributed to 29 peer-reviewed publications including journals in Nature Communications and Nature Communications Materials. His research has also produced 10 new technology reports and 3 utility patents. He recently received both the Early Career Achievement Medal in 2020 and the Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal in 2022.

Dr. Douglas Hoffman

Senior Research Scientist (SRS)/ Principal Section Technologist NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Dr. Douglas Hofmann is a Senior Research Scientist and Principal at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, where he serves as the Section Technologist for the Mechanical Fabrication and Test Section. He is also a Lecturer and Visiting Associate at Caltech in the Applied Physics and Materials Science Department. Dr. Hofmann founded JPL’s Metallurgy Facility in 2010, was a charter member of the Materials Development and Manufacturing Technology Group, and helped establish the JPL Additive Manufacturing Center. He is the Principal Investigator of the NASA FAMIS Flight Experiment and was a 2012 recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers from President Obama. He has spent more than 12 years working in metal additive manufacturing and has over 30 granted patents and over 60 peer-reviewed publications.

Dr. Jacob Nuechterlein

President/Founder Elementum 3D

Dr. Jacob Nuechterlein is the founder and president of Elementum 3D in Erie, CO. He earned his Bachelor of Engineering, Master of Science, and Doctor of Philosophy at the Colorado School of Mines. Jacob has been researching, teaching, or consulting on topics such as casting and powder metallurgy for the last 14 years. Elementum 3D’s work with powder bed laser additive manufacturing is based on these principles. In addition, is thesis work in thermodynamics and formation kinetics of metal matrix composites is directly related to all 3D printing processes.