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4. PRODUCTS AND MARKETS

ASI-built products

In order to survive in the harsh environments of space and other planets, humans need a variety of special structures, including pressure vessels, shelters, and solar panels. Many of these are composed of simple shapes that are efficiently manufactured using ASIís acoustic shaping technology, such as:

ASIís manufacturing techniques in microgravity can also be used to manufacture a number of products for use on Earth: Suitability of acoustically-formed objects for space applications:

The real issues here are:

Data on lunar materials is abundant, and the feasibility of making building materials from these is good [Lin, 1987a&b]. These issues are typical of the beginning of the next aerospace construction industry: the cultural uncertainties are similar to those of adapting horse-cart, railway and ship-building technologies to the new field of aircraft construction in the early 20th century. ASI's Advisory Board includes authorities in advanced materials technology and computational mechanics, along with the radical thinking of biomedical structural applications, precisely to address these exciting issues.

Extension to other forms of manufacturing

ASI aims to lead the Space construction industry. The initial reason for confidence is the ready availability of Acoustic Shaping technology. With revenues generated from this, ASI will diversify to add other technologies as opportunities arise. For example, the synergy between bioengineering and microgravity construction may lead to radically different methods of "growing" structures. Pure crystal growth is already seen as a major industry for microgravity; again this may be absorbed into our technologies. Moreover, we conceptualize that such a method could be used in conjunction with hollow aluminum or aluminum oxide spheres and a bonding, reinforcing epoxy-resin to form regular, virtually perfect spheres, cylinder, curved walls, straight walls, and many other complex shapes simply through the alteration of the resonant field.

Plans for Future Manufacturing Application Research

Plans for future work include:

  1. Further development of technology and processes involved therein
  2. Acquiring epoxy-resins for use in manufacturing experimentation processes
  3. Currently researching possibility of using several types of resins as our medium
    1. UV Curable---Epoxies, Etc.ó60-7010 & 60-7010-2 (each cures in 5 seconds under 300W/in^2 UV light
    2. Heat Curable---Cape Composites---Cape 2000 & 3000 series of resins
    3. Various CAís and epoxy coating systems being explored
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