Bringing the Factory to the Shop

Test Bed Vision:

To increase the application, reliability and predictability of additive manufacturing, focusing on the additive manufacturing of metals, polymers and ceramics.


3D printing project lifecycle, from scanning a horse’s hoof to producing the bespoke titanium horseshoe.

This was done by improving the monitoring and modelling of the additive manufacturing process. This required the development of new sensing technologies that can be placed in the extreme environments that exist with manufacturing equipment. This allows feedback loop control to be developed for additive manufacturing. New models were developed that can predict material properties by the combination of the three key variables to material performance, being material, microstructure, and processing, and how these three interact and influence each other. The new models will allow the rapid development of new parts with optimum properties and optimum machine settings.

The application space focuses on remote area additive manufacturing where the feedstocks for the processes will be harvested from the environment. The feedstocks could be in the form of broken parts and materials for remanufacturing or by the use of machine refining of feedstocks from the environment, being bio-derived polymers or refining of ores. The second application space that was targeted will be the manufacture of multi-material devices. The development of multi-material printing allows the manufacture of devices with inbuilt wiring, sensing, drug delivery, and many other functions by the combination of structural and functional materials.

This test bed was led by Daniel East from CSIRO’s Manufacturing, and was a collaboration by staff from CSIRO’s Data61, Manufacturing, Minerals, and Land & Water.