Additive Manufacturing of High Strength Metal Alloys Jump to section
Additive Manufacturing of Polymer-derived Ceramics Jump to section
Self-Propagating Waveguide Processing of Architected Materials Jump to section
Additive Manufacturing of Thin-Walled Polymer Heat Exchangers Jump to section
Ultralight Metallic Microlattices Jump to section

Center for Additive Materials (CAM)

The Center for Additive Materials (CAM) has been established by HRL Laboratories, LLC to accelerate the development of high performance materials for additive manufacturing processes. With the rapid introduction of additive processes into more and more industries, the portfolio of materials available for 3D printing plays a key role in defining the success of the additive manufacturing revolution. CAM is dedicated to broaden the property space accessible via additive manufacturing. Key focus areas include:

  1. Processing innovations to enable 3D printing of established materials
  2. Development of new metal alloys, ceramics and polymers tailored to specific additive processes
  3. Quality control and material/part qualification through in-situ sensing and data analytics

HRL is uniquely positioned for a leadership role in the science and engineering of additive manufacturing: We are informed by the latest technological challenges of our LLC members (Boeing & GM) and our Government customers as we maintain strong ties with universities, national labs and other innovative companies.


Additive Manufacturing of High Strength Metal Alloys

The unique solidification conditions during metal additive manufacturing drastically limit the number of alloys that can be processed today.  This has hindered metal additive manufacturing from reaching its full potential to transform design and fabrication and disrupt multiple industries. HRL has developed a metallurgical approach to drastically expand the alloys amenable to processing with existing additive manufacturing hardware. Our approach is based on manipulating solidification mechanisms via functionalization of feedstock powders with nanoparticle nucleants selected using crystallographic informatics. We have demonstrated the effectiveness of this approach by successfully selective laser melting aluminum alloy Al7075 and Al6061 powders resulting in crack-free, equiaxed, fine-grained microstructure and yield strength comparable to wrought material.

Selected Publications:

Additive Manufacturing of Polymer-derived Ceramics

The extremely high melting point of many ceramics adds challenges to additive manufacturing as compared with metals and polymers. Because ceramics cannot be cast or machined easily, 3D printing enables a big leap in geometrical flexibility. HRL has developed preceramic resin systems that can be cured with ultraviolet light in commercially available stereolithography 3D printers or through a patterned mask. Polymer structures with complex shape can be formed and then pyrolyzed to a ceramic with uniform shrinkage and virtually no porosity. Silicon oxycarbide structures fabricated with this approach exhibit high strength and withstand temperatures up to 1700C.

Selected Publications:

Self-Propagating Waveguide Processing of Architected Materials

HRL has developed a platform technology to rapidly and scalably manufacture architected lattice materials based on polymers, metals, and ceramics suitable for a variety of applications. Architected materials with periodic cellular structure exhibit unprecedented properties that cannot be achieved with conventional materials. A self-propagating polymer waveguide process invented at HRL is used to additively manufacture architected polymer lattice structures 100-1000x faster than conventional 3D printing approaches such as stereolithography. HRL’s process is inherently scalable to large areas in addition to offering high throughput. HRL has developed photo polymer formulations for a broad range of applications including:

  1. High strength and stiffness formulations for low-density sandwich panel cores
  2. Viscoelastic formulations for padding and impact protection
  3. Bio compatible formulations for biomedical and cellular scaffoldings
  4. Dissolvable formulations for sacrificial templates essential for hollow microlattices
  5. Preceramic formulations for polymer derived ceramic lattices and honeycombs
Selected Publications:

Additive Manufacturing of Thin-Walled Polymer Heat Exchangers

Ultralight Metallic Microlattices

Sandwich structures are unique enablers of lightweight design, as they offer an exceptional combination of low density and high bending rigidity. Lightweight sandwich structures are widespread in aerospace applications (e.g. winglets, flaps, rudders, rotor blades) but are also used in many other industries. State-of-the-art sandwich panels are created by attaching thin, stiff composite or aluminum alloy facesheets to thick, lightweight honeycomb or foam cores. HRL has developed advanced core materials based on hollow metallic truss structures that offer improved compressive and shear strengths versus honeycombs. Hollow truss structures are preferably fabricated by coating a polymer template of the truss structure, which is subsequently removed. This approach converts a 2D thin film or coating into a 3D cellular material, thereby redefining the applications of a range of thin film/coating materials.

Selected Publications:


Click to show/hide the list of Publications

Authors Title Publication Volume Pages Year
J.H. Martin, B.D. Yahata, J.M. Hundley, J.A. Mayer, T.A. Schaedler, T.M. Pollock 3D Printing of High-Strength Aluminium Alloys Nature 549 365-371 2017
J.M. Hundley, Z.C. Eckel, E. Schueller, K. Cante, S.M. Biesboer, B.D. Yahata, T.A. Schaedler Geometric Characterization of Additively Manufactured Polymer Derived Ceramics Additive Manufacturing 18 95-102 2017
T.A. Schaedler, L.J. Chan, E.C. Clough, M.A. Stilke, J.M. Hundley, L.J. Masur Nanocrystalline Aluminum Truss Cores for Lightweight Sandwich Structures JOM 2017
Bauer, J; Meza, LR; Schaedler, TA; Schwaiger, R; Zheng, X; Valdevit, L;  Nanolattices-An Emerging Class of Mechanical Metamaterials Advanced Materials 170 1850 2017
Erdeniz, Dinc; Schaedler, Tobias A; Dunand, David C;  Deposition-based synthesis of nickel-based superalloy microlattices Scripta Materialia 138 28-31 2017
Faber, Katherine T; Schaedler, TA; et al; The role of ceramic and glass science research in meeting societal challenges: Report from an NSF‐sponsored workshop Journal of the American Ceramic Society 100 1777-1803 2017
Martin, John H; Ashby, David S; Schaedler, Tobias A;  Thin-walled high temperature alloy structures fabricated from additively manufactured polymer templates Materials & Design 120 291-297 2017
Clough, Eric C; Ensberg, Jie; Eckel, Zak C; Ro, Christopher J; Schaedler, Tobias A;  Mechanical performance of hollow tetrahedral truss cores International Journal of Solids and Structures 91 115-126 2016
Eckel, Zak C; Zhou, Chaoyin; Martin, John H; Jacobsen, Alan J; Carter, William B; Schaedler, Tobias A;  Additive manufacturing of polymer-derived ceramics Science 351 58-62 2016
Schaedler, Tobias A; Carter, William B;  Architected Cellular Materials Annual Review of Materials Research 46 187-210 2016
Cordes, Nikolaus L; Henderson, Kevin; Stannard, Tyler; Williams, Jason J; Xiao, Xianghui; Robinson, Mathew WC; Schaedler, Tobias A; Chawla, Nikhilesh; Patterson, Brian M;  Micro-scale X-ray Computed Tomography of Additively Manufactured Cellular Materials under Uniaxial Compression Microscopy and Microanalysis 21 129-130 2015
Hundley, J. M., Clough, E. C., & Jacobsen, A. J. The low velocity impact response of sandwich panels with lattice core reinforcement International Journal of Impact Engineering 84 64-77 2015
Kolodziejska, JA; Roper, CS; Yang, SS; Carter, WB; Jacobsen, AJ;  Research Update: Enabling ultra-thin lightweight structures: Microsandwich structures with microlattice cores APL Materials 3 50701 2015
Roper, Christopher S; Schubert, Randall C; Maloney, Kevin J; Page, David; Ro, Christopher J; Yang, Sophia S; Jacobsen, Alan J;  Scalable 3D bicontinuous fluid networks: Polymer heat exchangers toward artificial organs Advanced Materials 27 2479-2484 2015
Liu, Yilun; Schaedler, Tobias A; Chen, Xi;  Dynamic energy absorption characteristics of hollow microlattice structures Mechanics of Materials 77 2014
Liu, Yilun; Schaedler, Tobias A; Jacobsen, Alan J; Chen, Xi;  Quasi-static energy absorption of hollow microlattice structures Composites Part B: Engineering 67 39-49 2014
Liu, Yilun; Schaedler, Tobias A; Jacobsen, Alan J; Lu, Weiyi; Qiao, Yu; Chen, Xi;  Quasi-static crush behavior of hollow microtruss filled with NMF liquid Composite Structures 115 29-40 2014
Rys, Jan; Valdevit, Lorenzo; Schaedler, Tobias A; Jacobsen, Alan J; Carter, William B; Greer, Julia R;  Fabrication and Deformation of Metallic Glass Micro‐Lattices Advanced Engineering Materials 16 889-896 2014
Salari-Sharif, Ladan; Schaedler, Tobias A; Valdevit, Lorenzo;  Energy dissipation mechanisms in hollow metallic microlattices Journal of Materials Research 29 1755-1770 2014
Schaedler, Tobias A; Ro, Christopher J; Sorensen, Adam E; Eckel, Zak; Yang, Sophia S; Carter, William B; Jacobsen, Alan J;  Designing metallic microlattices for energy absorber applications Advanced Engineering Materials 16 276-283 2014
Maloney, Kevin J; Roper, Christopher S; Jacobsen, Alan J; Carter, William B; Valdevit, Lorenzo; Schaedler, Tobias A;  Microlattices as architected thin films: Analysis of mechanical properties and high strain elastic recovery APL Materials 1 22106 2013
Schaedler, Tobias A; Jacobsen, Alan J; Carter, Wiliam B;  Toward lighter, stiffer materials Science 341 1181-1182 2013
Valdevit, Lorenzo; Godfrey, Scott W; Schaedler, Tobias A; Jacobsen, Alan J; Carter, William B;  Compressive strength of hollow microlattices: Experimental characterization, modeling, and optimal design Journal of Materials Research 28 2461-2473 2013
Yin, S., Jacobsen, A. J., Wu, L., & Nutt, S. R. Inertial stabilization of flexible polymer micro-lattice materials Journal of Materials Science 48 6558-6566 2013
Bernal Ostos, J.; Rinaldi, R.G.; Hammetter, C.I.; Stucky, G.D., Zok, F.W., Jacobsen, A.J. Deformation stabilization of lattice structures via foam addition Acta Materialia 60 6476-6485 2012
Doty, R. E., Kolodziejska, J. A. and Jacobsen, A. J. Hierarchical Polymer Microlattice Structures Advanced Engineering Materials 14 503-507 2012
Maloney, Kevin J; Fink, Kathryn D; Schaedler, Tobias A; Kolodziejska, Joanna A; Jacobsen, Alan J; Roper, Christopher S;  Multifunctional heat exchangers derived from three-dimensional micro-lattice structures International Journal of Heat and Mass Transfer 55 2486-2493 2012
Roper, Christopher S.; Fink, Kathryn D.; Lee, Samuel T.; Kolodziejska, Joanna A.; Jacobsen, Alan J.  Anisotropic convective heat transfer in microlattice materials   59 622-629 2012
Torrents, A; Schaedler, TA; Jacobsen, AJ; Carter, WB; Valdevit, L;  Characterization of nickel-based microlattice materials with structural hierarchy from the nanometer to the millimeter scale Acta Materialia 60 3511-3523 2012
Fink, Kathryn D; Kolodziejska, Joanna A; Jacobsen, Alan J; Roper, Christopher S;  Fluid dynamics of flow through microscale lattice structures formed from self‐propagating photopolymer waveguides AIChE Journal 57 2636-2646 2011
Jacobsen, A. J., Mahoney, S., Carter, W. B., & Nutt, S. Vitreous carbon micro-lattice structures Carbon 49 1025-1032 2011
Lian, Jie; Jang, Dongchan; Valdevit, Lorenzo; Schaedler, Tobias A; Jacobsen, Alan J; B. Carter, William; Greer, Julia R;  Catastrophic vs gradual collapse of thin-walled nanocrystalline Ni hollow cylinders as building blocks of microlattice structures Nano letters 11 4118-4125 2011
Roper, Christopher S;  Multiobjective optimization for design of multifunctional sandwich panel heat pipes with micro-architected truss cores International Journal of Heat and Fluid Flow 32 239-248 2011
Schaedler, Tobias A; Jacobsen, Alan J; Torrents, Anna; Sorensen, Adam E; Lian, Jie; Greer, Julia R; Valdevit, Lorenzo; Carter, Wiliam B;  Ultralight metallic microlattices Science 334 962-965 2011
Valdevit, L., Jacobsen, A. J., Greer, J. R. and Carter, W. B. Protocols for the Optimal Design of Multi-Functional Cellular Structures: From Hypersonics to Micro-Architected Materials. Journal of the American Ceramic Society 94 s15-s34 2011
Evans, A. G., M. Y. He, V. S. Deshpande, John W. Hutchinson, A. J. Jacobsen, and W. Barvosa-Carter Concepts for Enhanced Energy Absorption Using Hollow
International Journal of Impact Engineering 37 947-959 2010
Jacobsen, A. J., Barvosa-Carter, W., & Nutt, S. Shear behavior of polymer micro-scale truss structures formed from self-propagating polymer waveguides Acta Materialia 56 1209-1218 2008
Jacobsen, A. J., Barvosa-Carter, W., & Nutt, S. Micro-scale truss structures with three-fold and six-fold symmetry formed from self-propagating polymer waveguides Acta Materialia 56 2540-2548 2008
Jacobsen, A. J., Barvosa-Carter, W., & Nutt, S. Micro-scale truss structures formed from self-propagating photopolymer waveguides Advanced Materials 19 3892-3896 2007
Jacobsen, A. J., Barvosa-Carter, W., & Nutt, S. Compression behavior of micro-scale truss structures formed from self-propagating polymer waveguides Acta Materialia 55 6724-6733 2007



Workshop: New Materials for Additive Manufacturing

When: Winter 2018
Where: HRL in Malibu, CA


Dr. Tobias Schaedler
Director, Center for Additive Materials
Email: additive[at]

Sensors and Materials Lab
HRL Laboratories, LLC
3011 Malibu Canyon Road
Malibu, CA 90265