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Inherent Strain Approach for Residual Stress Mitigation in Metal 3D Printing

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Conference Abstract: Inherent Strain Approach for Residual Stress Mitigation in Metal 3D Printing.

Metal additive manufacturing (AM) has experienced rapid growth due to its ability to build complex shapes with minimal material waste compared to traditional manufacturing methods. This growth has been particularly prominent in the automotive, aerospace, and biomedical industries, requiring lightweight, customizable designs and rapid production. This study focuses on laser powder bed fusion (LPBF) technologies, particularly direct metal laser sintering (DMLS). During the printing process, residual stresses can cause distortion and lead to a high rate of build failures. The layer-by-layer nature of LPBF processes results in irregular thermal cycles, contributing to residual stress.

Introduce build simulation for process optimization, as it helps determine build, process, and post-process parameters. The inherent strain approach accounts for material properties and mechanical behaviours, considering mechanical and thermal properties and process parameters like laser power, hatching strategy, velocity, and focus diameter. This methodology allows for a comprehensive understanding of the entire printing process.

This case study presents a practical application of the inherent strain approach. By combining numerical and experimental methods, we measure the distortion caused by residual stresses after DMLS. This innovative approach provides a streamlined solution for build simulation and ensures successful builds, eliminating the need for a trial-and-error approach. It is a significant step towards more efficient and reliable metal 3D printing.

    Senior Technical Support Officer
    Western Sydney University