The Fabrication Laboratory (FabLab) facility for exploration missions.

K.A. Savin
United States

Keywords: additive manufacturing, remote manufacturing, space, Mars, NASA


A NASA awarded contract to complete the design of a new in-space manufacturing system known as FabLab will be described. Long duration, long distance missions require solutions that enable independent operations in situations where resupply and technical support is only available in a virtual sense (data and communications). The need for specialized tools and replacement parts is often difficult to plan for, and logistically problematic to include in resource constrained efforts. The Fabrication Laboratory was developed to reduce the dependency on extra equipment and parts for crewed space exploration missions. With capabilities that include metal, printed circuits and ceramic part production, this system does not make it easier for the team to predict what they may need, it lessens the programs dependency on making such predictions and the logistics of a long supply chain. In this presentation we will describe the development and application of this tool.