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The U.S. Navy will pay the American company $9 million over the next four years to develop a process enabling the production of faithful digital twins of individual parts . The digitized spare parts should be producible on demand on a 3D metal printer.

The problem is that replica spare parts for older ships often have to go through many years of testing and certification before they can be used. The reason for this is the difficulty of precisely reproducing properties of the original parts. GE Global Research is now going to look for ways to shorten the certification process to a few weeks and ensure the supply of 3D printed metal spare parts for ships.