The US Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) has developed a new alloy named “USAF-96,” 50% stronger than commercially available steel, for use in bunker-buster bombs, aircraft and M1 Abrams tanks, among other military and commercial applications.
The USAF-96 (AF-9628) was developed by Dr. Rachel Ann Abrahams of the AFRL’s Munitions Directorate. A patent to manufacture the USAF-96 steel that is 50% stronger than steel was issued on October 22, writes techlinkcenter.org.
The low alloy steel, when thermally processed with the Air Force’s patented method has an ultimate tensile strength of 245 KSI; yield strength at 0.2% offset of 187 KSI; elongation to failure of 13%; and an impact toughness as measured with a Charpy V-notch test at -40°C of 30 ft-lb.
The new steel has demonstrated hardenability and toughness at -40°C, even with sections up to 4-inches in thickness, making it ideal for a range of applications from automotive components to structural bridge pieces to 3D printed parts for an M1 tank.
Steel with such features contain expensive elements such as Tungsten, Cobalt and Nickel. However, the USAF-96 does not contain tungsten, like Eglin Steel or cobalt, part of the formula for HP-9-4-20, which is in the Massive Ordnance Penetrator, a 30,000-pound bomb that destroys assets in well-protected facilities. The alloy can be produced using standard air-melt production processes.
The USAF-96 can also be powdered and 3D printed into components. The method used is called Powder Bed Fusion, where, a laser selectively melts powder in a pattern to create three-dimensional objects. As each layer is complete, the printer dispenses more powder on the build area, and the process continues until the part is complete.
“Many alloys don’t take to additive manufacturing very well. For instance, certain alloys will not melt and they crack a lot once you actually try to make a part,” said Capt. Erin Hager, an AFRL employee and recent graduate of the Air Force Institute of Technology’s Aerospace Engineering Program.
“In the case of the new alloy, we found no evidence of cracking. The output is similar to traditionally manufactured parts,” Hager asserted.
After a more thorough examination, she determined that the parts “matched the required 10 percent elongation indicating increased strength without becoming brittle.”
Hager explains that additive manufacturing “allows [engineers] to put weight [on munitions] only where it’s needed.” Ultimately, this “enables lighter munitions that get just as deep, so aircraft can carry more of these weapons,” she says.
Missile Defense Agency has awarded Raytheon a $500.6 million modification contract to perform research and development support for the Army Navy Transportable Radar Surveillance Control Model-2 and Sea-Based X-Band radar
Israel Ministry of Defense is building a new research institute and is investing NIS 200 million ($56.35 million) to study light particles or photons, and develop powerful laser weapons
Leonardo has been selected by the UKs Royal Air Force (RAF) to support counter-drone research and development programme at DSEI-2019, London, UK. The study will explore the current threat posed by hostile drones and how this is likely to evolve in future, as well as evaluating a range of technologies that could form a future RAF counter-drone capability
Recognizing the havoc caused by public dissemination of fake information, the US Defense Advanced Research projects Agency (DARPA) has announced the Semantic Forensics (SemaFor) program to develop technologies that make the automatic detection, attribution, and characterization of falsified media assets a reality. The goal of SemaFor is to develop a suite of semantic analysis algorithms that dramatically increase the burden on the creators of falsified media, making it exceedingly difficult for them to create compelling manipulated content that goes undetected
Schiebel’s Camcopter S-100 Integrated on French Navy's Mistral Carrier
Turkey's ASELSAN Wins $195.7M Sub-systems Contract for Pakistan’s Milgem Frigate
German Army to get 1,500 Spike Missiles
Senegal Orders 3 Armed Piriou Offshore Patrol Vessels
Russia Seeks Customers for 6 Upgraded, Former Indian Air Force Su-30 Fighters
Italian Arms Exports to Pakistan Jump four-folds in 1 year
Indonesia Plans F-16 V Fighter Jets Purchase, Russian Su-35 still on Anvil
Boeing admits Parachute 'Deployment Anomaly' in Spaceflight Abort Test
Several joint production and direct procurement programs could be halted if the US and Europe carry through with their threat...
Sanctions-hit Iran has found ingenious ways to develop military hardware
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is rapidly permeating the defence industry to aid and improve human decision-making
Upgrade of Russias Sukhoi Su-30SM fighters to equip them with armaments, radar, sensors and engines from the more powerful Su-35...
US companies sanctioned by China for supplying weapons to Taiwan may be denied rare earth elements (REEs), which have critical...
While the US F-35 stealth aircraft has become one the fastest selling fighter jets in the world aircraft market, thanks...