SUBJECT: M.S. Thesis Presentation
BY: Kevin Le
TIME: Thursday, April 29, 2021, 2:00 p.m.
PLACE:, Virtual
TITLE: Evaluation of Additive Manufacturing Side Channels for Nuclear Nonproliferation Applications
COMMITTEE: Dr. Steven Biegalski, Chair (NRE)
Dr. Christopher Saldana (ME)
Dr. Colt Montgomery (LANL)


The nuclear industry is continuing to grow and adopt new technologies to manufacture components. One of the technologies under consideration is additive manufacturing (AM) or colloquially known as 3D printing. AM could make production of components cheaper and faster; however, it is prone to nuclear proliferation risks. Currently assessing the condition of component, in the process of being manufactured, requires visual inspection; however, AM machines give off signatures that offer alternative means or side channels that give insight about the state of the component. There are correlations to be found between these side channels and these states. If correlations were found between the side channels and the geometry being manufactured, proliferators could take advantage of these correlations to steal blueprints relating to nuclear technology. This work aims to explore the feasibility of using side channels to predict geometric characteristics of components being manufactured on AM machines. The work has been done on a Ultimaker 2+ 3D printer. Specifically, the temperature, vibration, and current side channels will be assessed. The questions answered specifically are: how can time dependent temperature, vibration, and current correlate to specific geometries, how can current predict the velocity of the nozzle, how can vibration be used to predict the height of a geometry, and how can vibration distributions be used to distinguish geometries from each other.