SUNConferences, 17th Annual Conference of the Rapid Product Development Association of South Africa

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INVESTIGATING ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY FOR APPLICATION IN THE AEROSPACE INDUSTRY
William Motsoko Makhetha

Last modified: 2016-10-04

Abstract


INVESTIGATING ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY FOR APPLICATION IN THE AEROSPACE INDUSTRY

W.M. Makhetha[1]* & T.Becker[2]

1Department of Industrial Engineering

University of Stellenbosch, South Africa

makhetham@cput.ac.za

 

2Department of Industrial Engineering

University of Stellenbosch, South Africa

tbecker@sun.ac.za

ABSTRACT

Although Additive Manufacturing (AM) technology has undergone significant development in the recent year, it is still not widely accepted by most industries [1]. By gaining a true understanding of the link between production and part structural integrity, we can significantly increase the readiness of the technology; hence the following research will be contributing towards the readiness of the technology for application in the aerospace industry.

Keywords: Selective Laser Melting, Titanium Alloys.

 

1.          INTRODUCTION

Additive Manufacturing (AM) processes make three-dimensional parts directly from CAD models by adding materials layer by layer [1], offering the beneficial ability to build parts with geometric and material complexities that could not be produced by subtractive manufacturing processes. AM technology includes Selective Laser Melting (SLM), Selective Laser Sintering (SLS), 3 Dimensional Printing (3DP) and Electron Beam Melting (EBM). The research will focus on SLM of titanium alloys.

 

2.       LITERATURE REVIEW

The SLM technology, is known to allow the production of parts in a wide range of metallic materials by selectively fusing a metallic powder material without bonding agents [2]. Choosing appropriate processing parameters when using this technology allows the part-porosity to be kept below 1%; hence important if dense parts are desired [3]. The ability of this technology to reduce porosity therefore results in mechanical properties being widely comparable to those obtained from conventionally processed materials. For the technology to be widely accepted by industries, the repeatability and consistency of the manufactured parts are critical [1]. What makes investigations intricate is that the material performance, in for example SLM, depends on numerous factors including material powder characteristics, process parameters and post-processing procedures to name a few.

 

3.       CONCLUSION

The inherent nature of AM, i.e. fast production, makes post-processing undesirable; hence the focus of this research on process parameters and post-processing procedures as these have a significant impact on the part’s structural integrity. Therefore, by gaining a true understanding of the link between production and part structural integrity for specific AM parts significantly increases the readiness of the technology.

 

REFERENCES

[1]       N. Guo and M. C. Leu, “Additive manufacturing: technology, applications and research needs,” Front. Mech. Eng., vol. 8, no. 3, pp. 215–243, Sep. 2013.

[2]       M. Shiomi, K. Osakada, K. Nakamura, T. Yamashita, and F. Abe, “Residual Stress within Metallic Model Made by Selective Laser Melting Process,” CIRP Ann. - Manuf. Technol., vol. 53, no. 1, pp. 195–198, 2004.

[3]       A. B. Spierings, K. Wegener, and G. Levy, “Designing Material Properties Locally with Additive Manufacturing technology SLM.”

 

 


[1] The author was enrolled for a D Phil (Industrial) degree in the Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Stellenbosch

[2] The author was enrolled for a D Phil (Industrial) degree in the Department of Industrial Engineering, University Stellenbosch

*Corresponding author