Additive Manufacturing for Aerospace and Defense

Metal 3D Printing Solutions for Aerospace and Defense

Take off with additive manufacturing for Aerospace and Defense. Nikon SLM Solutions Systems help meet stringent industry standard certification to make complex parts that cannot be machined and improve the performance and functionality of the component. Selective Laser Melting gives engineers the design freedom to consolidate parts to reduce mass and cost, ultimately making strategic weight decisions where needed.

Whether you are making one or many, the sky’s the limit – we help ensure your success with metal additive manufacturing. Find out more about the numerous manufacturing possibilities using  SLM® technology  in the Aerospace and Defense industry below.


Machine: SLM®800
Material: Titanium

Main Fitting of a Bizjet from Safran

In a joint project, Safran Landing Systems and SLM Solutions tested Selective Laser Melting to produce a component of a nose landing gear for a bizjet. A world first for a part of this size. The objective of the project is to demonstrate the feasibility to produce a main fitting by Selective Laser Melting process. The component was therefore redesigned for metal-based additive manufacturing allowing time saving in the whole process, and significant weight reduction about 15% of the component.

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Monolithic Thrust Chamber - Cell Core GmbH

Machine: SLM®280
Material: IN718
Layer Thickness: 30µm
Build Time: 3d 5h 25m (Maximized Build Chamber, 1 Unit)

The Monolithic Thrust Chamber of CellCore GmbH has an improved functional cooling due to an innovative lattice structure, which also increases stability. It is highly efficient and minimizes individual process steps while combining multiple parts into a single component; production time reduced from months to days. 



Gooseneck Kueger Flap Actuation Bracket - Asco Industries

Machine: SLM®280 Twin
Material: Ti6Al4V
Layer Thickness: 30µm Layer Thickness
Build Time: 1d 19h 11m (Maximized Build Chamber, 2 Units)

Through additive manufacturing, there was 31% weight savings and a shortened total assembly time. It integrates three parts into one to reduce assembly and has an improved buy-to-fly ratio from 17 minimized to 1.5. The build time was shortened by 42% using a SLM®280 Twin, compared to single-laser machines. 


SLM® Material for Aerospace & Defense Applications

Nikon SLM Solutions provides a wide range of suitable materials for the aerospace industry which meet the stringent requirements of aircraft engine manufacturers for metallographic and mechanical properties.

Our portfolio includes: 

  • Ni-Based Alloys: IN625, IN718 and HX
  • Ti-Based Alloys: TIAl6V4
  • Al-Based Alloys: AlSi10Mg 



Selective Laser Melting Solutions for Aerospace Applications

  • Thrust Chambers

    Selective Laser Melting can be used to manufacture monolithic thrust chambers, combining multiple parts into one part. 3D printing lattice structures and internal cooling channels additionally lead to an improved part quality while reducing weight and save fuel.

  • Heat Exchangers

    Selective Laser Melting offers a freedom of design second to none. The use of 3D printing a heat exchanger enables the creation of highly complex geometries inside the internal core, increasing its surface area. This ultimately allows the thermal heat rejection to significantly increase.

  • Jet Engines

    Selective Laser Melting makes it possible to produce jet engines with clean combustion, improved durability and higher efficiency. SLM® technology leads to cost advantages compared to casting and milling at low-volume production of complex parts and shortened development cycles due to tool-less production.

Quality Standards for Aerospace Industry

We are experts when it comes to qualifying metal parts on our machines, and we are ready to help you each stage of the process. SLM Solutions supports aerospace projects with relevant documentation, certificates, pFMEAs, parameters, powders, aerospace tailored services and more. Allow us to share our knowledge with you to boost your metal additive manufacturing production, contact us today! 

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