Department of Defense awards $365,000 to YSU for 3D printer

Youngstown State University has been selected to receive a $365,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Defense to purchase a 3D printer that will continue to enhance YSU’s additive manufacturing research and education capabilities.

The Department of Defense announced the award after a highly competitive grant process under the Defense University Research Instrumentation Program. The Department of Defense received nearly 700 proposals, but only 111 academic institutions received awards.

There are seven types of additive manufacturing processes,” said Brett Conner, YSU associate professor of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering and director of Advanced Manufacturing Workforce Initiatives. “With this new equipment, YSU students and faculty will have access to six of the seven types of processes either here at YSU or at America Makes.”

The new 3D printer uses a process called “directed energy deposition” that involves spraying powdered metal or ceramic in front of a laser that then fuses the powder. An animation of the process can be seen at 

“With this additional equipment, we believe YSU now provides our students, faculty and the community with access to additive manufacturing technology unmatched by any other university in the nation,” said Martin Abraham, YSU provost and vice president for Academic Affairs.

The Defense University Research Instrumentation Program supports the purchase of state-of-the-art equipment that augments current university capabilities or develops new capabilities to perform cutting edge defense research and associated graduate student research training.

The awards are the result of a merit competition jointly conducted by three Department of Defense research offices: the Army Research Office, Office of Naval Research, and Air Force Office of Scientific Research. YSU’s award is through the Office of Naval Research.

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