Anywaves develops a brand new satellite tv for pc antenna with 3DCERAM ceramic 3D printing know-how
French space agency spin out Anywaves has made usable 3DCERAM’s 3D printing services to design a new ceramic antenna for small satellites.
Working with 3DCERAM’s 3D Aim consulting service over an 18 month period, the aerospace company has developed the GNSS L1 / E1 ribbon antenna that uses zirconia material and has a grid structure to achieve the “best high frequency performance”. Anywaves now decides how production of the component can best be continued.
Working with 3D-Aim, Anywaves implemented a three-step process that took them from a blank sheet of paper to a part for parts production. The 18-month process began with a risk analysis, during which the technical and economic requirements of the Anywaves antenna and the likelihood of failure during the printing, cleaning, debinding and sintering process were determined by analyzing the customer’s CAD file. Here, 3D-Aim printed several benchmark parts using a range of grid structures to understand how best to make the final part.
Companies then took a closer look at the CAD file and modified it to incorporate the results of the first phase of the process, improving mechanical tolerances, material quality control, and more. During this second phase, the partners also focused on part orientation, considering the impact on print accuracy, print time and cost, as well as the scaling factor, to ensure the part is printed in the desired dimensions and finished with the required finish. After iterations of the design were printed and burn tests were performed to “mature” the design, the CAD file was finally declared ready for production.
According to Anywaves, the resulting antenna can withstand harsh environments without thermal protection thanks to its excellent radiation properties, thanks to the “choice of materials and solderless feed system”. Anywaves’ next step is to begin series production of the antenna either through 3DCERAM’s service offering or by investing in a 3DCERAM printer and integrating the technology internally.
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