MEDIA ADISORY: Cal Poly to Celebrate Partnership with Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

May 29, 2017

What: Cal Poly will celebrate the university’s partnership with Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), a collaboration that spans student projects, faculty applied research and technology transfer. The government entity is a top recruiter of Cal Poly engineering graduates with currently more than 100 engineering alumni employees. Most recently, LLNL has provided a selective laser melting machine (SLM) for Cal Poly’s Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering Department (IME). The cutting-edge 3-D printing technology allows students to print project components and prototypes in stainless steel directly from designs.

“The addition of the SLM places Cal Poly at the top of virtually every manufacturing program in the U.S., especially for undergraduates, and strengthens our position as the nation’s leader in educating advanced manufacturing professionals,” said Jim Meagher, interim dean for Cal Poly’s College of Engineering. “This technology transfer represents the latest milestone in our rich and decades-long relationship with LLNL.”

Where: Engineering III (No. 41), Room 101.

When: 11 a.m. Friday, June 2. A dedication ceremony will be held from 11 to 11:30 a.m., followed by technology demonstrations by students from 11:30 a.m. to noon.

More information: Several speakers will share highlights of the Cal Poly – LLNL partnership, including President Jeffrey D. Armstrong, IME Chair Daniel Waldorf, Interim Dean Jim Meagher, and Stephen Burke, LLNL engineering coordinator.

“The SLM is the overwhelmingly dominant 3-D printing technology in use today — its only limitation is your imagination,” said Xuan Wang, manufacturing engineering professor. “You are able manufacture any design you can think of, enabling a new design paradigm that didn’t exist even 10 years ago.”

SLM printing can reduce the weight of parts by 70 percent without sacrificing mechanical performances. Other benefits include reduction in part count in assembly, decreased lead-time, and lower cost especially for low volume manufacturing.

For LLNL, providing the SLM enhances its ability to attract top notch Cal Poly graduates with metal 3-D printing skills. “Our partnership with LLNL results in a strong pipeline of interns and permanent hires from Cal Poly,” said Wang, who served for two consecutive summers as a visiting faculty at LLNL under the fellowship from Department of Energy’s Office of Science.

Photo information: Engineering students, from left, Moira Foster, Dominque Porcincula, Benjamin Murray and David Otsu work with the SLM to 3-D print in steel.

About Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) is a government entity, sponsored by the National Nuclear Security Administration and the Department of Energy. Livermore’s defining responsibility is ensuring the safety, security and reliability of the nation’s nuclear deterrent. The Laboratory’s science and engineering are being applied to achieve breakthroughs for counterterrorism and nonproliferation, defense and intelligence, and energy and environmental security. LLNL employs 2700 scientists and engineers, more than 40 percent of whom hold a doctorate in their field. The Laboratory also hosts over 700 facility users, visiting scientists, teachers and students.

About the Selective Laser Melting (SLM) machine
Selective laser melting machines manufacture parts by using a high power-density laser to melt and fuse metallic powders together. The SLM can fabricate parts directly from a digital file, eliminating the need for tooling. Additive manufacturing works by adding layers of material to a base, rather than the traditional process of removing material. The SLM 125 is on unlimited loan to Cal Poly Engineering.

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