The US Department of Energy is looking to save money at nuclear power plants across the country, so they've decided to turn to 3d printing technology to get it done.
Working with GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy, the DOE believes they can speed up the time it takes to produce replacement parts at nuclear plants and is investing $2 million into the production of 3d printed parts which will then be tested to see how they interact with radiation.
"The potential of 3D printing to speed delivery time and reduce the cost of manufacturing performance-enhancing replacement parts for nuclear power plants is quite significant,” said GEH President and Chief Executive Officer Jay Wileman.
Once the new concept parts have been 3d printed at GE Power's Advanced Manufacturing Works' facility in South Carolina, those parts will be shipped to the Idaho National Laboratory for irradiation testing.
At that point the DOE will know if they're able to leverage 3d printing tech to produce parts that can withstand the rigors of nuclear power plants across the US.