Ascent’s large-format additive manufacturing machine. Photo courtesy of Ascent Aerospace/PR Newswire.

A large-format machine installed by Ascent Aerospace is expected to deliver production-ready fixtures and molds with significantly shorter lead times.

SANTA ANA, Calif.—Aerospace tooling systems provider Ascent Aerospace recently installed a new large-format additive manufacturing (LFAM) machine that will enable the company to fabricate large-scale printed composite tooling for customers in the aerospace, automotive, maritime, and energy markets.

The machine, featuring a 10-ft x 40-ft x 5-ft build envelope, is co-located with Ascent’s composite tooling shop, autoclave, and clean room. By combining the technology with its in-house tooling and engineering capability, Ascent will be able to fabricate and deliver production-ready tools with lead times substantially lower than could be achieved with traditional metallic tooling. These tools include low-temperature layup molds, masters, trimming and drilling fixtures, and vacuum holding fixtures, the company said in a release.

A wide variety of materials, including ABS, polycarbonate, nylon, and PESU, are compatible with the LFAM machine. This will allow Ascent to create tailored solutions to meet customer needs and specifications, the release said.

Ascent Aerospace ( is a provider of aerospace tooling systems, factory automation, and integration services.

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