HRL, nTopology, & Morf3D explore 7A77.60L applications

05 December 2019

Though metal 3D printing’s use in production has grown in recent years, there are still many applications where low strength AlSiMg dominates the market.

With the launch of Aluminum 7A77.60L powder, California’s HRL Laboratories functionalized the strongest additive manufacturing aluminum to date.

Commercially available since October 2019, HRL researchers have begun to explore the industrial applications of 7A77. Already, NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center has begun applying the material to the production of large-scale aerospace components. Now, working with 3D design and engineering software company nTopology and aerospace manufacturing service provider Morf3D, HRL has built an application presenting 7A77’s potential in heat transfer and flow applications.

Harnessing the innate thermal conductivity of 7A77’s aluminum content, HRL and its partners have built a generatively designed fuel cooled oil cooler for aerospace applications. The high yield strength of 7A77 allows heat exchanger designers to reduce wall thickness by 50% effectively doubling the heat transfer performance of a heat exchanger simply by changing the material.