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Compliant mechanisms and space grade product redesign based on Additive Manufacturing
The use of Additive Manufacturing (AM) processes for space and terrestrial applications is a constantly growing topic of interest from the main actors in the industry. In the perspective of its future developments in the space field and for terrestrial applications, CSEM tackled the challenge of producing compliant structures based on SLM (Selective Laser Melting). In this framework, high performance stainless steel flexures with thickness below 380 micron offering bending fatigue resistance above 15 million cycles under realistic load cases were produced. On the other hand topology optimization software and specific design rules are applied to produce optimized structural parts and monolithic compliant structures. The second part of this paper describes the successful redesign of electrical SlipRings Assemblies (SRA) rotors intended for space applications. This project was run jointly with RUAG Space Switzerland, based on their expertise in the field of space grade SRAs and thanks to the know-how developed by CSEM in the field of AM-based mechanical (re)design. The novel architecture based on the combination of additive manufacturing, casting and remachining enables a significant reduction of the manufacturing and assembly costs and risks.

Authors: H. Saudan, L. Kiener, G. Perruchoud, J. Kruis, K. Vaideeswaran, M. M. Dadras, et al.

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