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Advanced additive manufacturing

Development of the platform for three-dimensional simulation and modelling of the additive manufacturing processes such as SLM/SLS.

Advanced additive manufacturing

Research project title: Development of LBM-based platform for modelling of advanced additive manufacturing characterised by the change of state matter


Research background

The project is funded by National Science Centre (NCN Poland) to AGH University of Science and Technology. Many manufacturing processes are based on the changes of state of matter. These are, for example, SLM/SLS technology (Selective Laser Sintering/Melting), Laser Cladding and other.

Also traditional technology –welding, sintering or powder metallurgy can be classified as technology with dual-transition transformation of aggregation state: melting-solidification. Very serious problems appear during manufacturing complex parts with combined materials.

For those reasons, it was decided to develop a modelling platform which assists in deeper understanding, design and optimisation of such processes dealing with different materials. Particularly, it is important for applications in manufacturing of advanced biomaterials, including development of multi-material implants with multifunctional surfaces.

More information can be found here.

Research aims

The aim of the project is development of the platform for three-dimensional simulation and modelling of the additive manufacturing processes such as SLM/SLS, characterised by changes of state of matter, such as melting and solidification. Platform will be based on homogeneous numerical methods and fast parallel calculations.   

How has the research been carried out?

Five basic processes can be considered and modelled, such as particle movement leading to powder bed generation; laser beam heat exchange and transfer; free flow of melted material and solidification.

These physical processes are modelled using four following sub-models: powder bed generation (PBG); heat exchange and transfer (HE&T); phase transition model and model of fluid flow with free surface. It is suggested that the holistic model is based entirely on homogeneous numerical methods, namely Cellular Automata (CA) and Lattice Boltzmann methods (LBM).

All models operate in a common domain. The number of processes and phenomena, that can be modelled simultaneously, is defined by the number of variables associated with the point, site, cell or node in the same domain. Implementation of a new process or physical phenomenon requires only addition of new variables and appropriate algorithms.

Research outcomes

The proposed integrated approach promises an expansion of the different applications outside the main area of the proposed research. AM is growing as a major manufacturing tool, the multi-material AM process is not yet optimised or fully understood, therefore there is a strong need for such inte-grated models to allow this optimisation. The integrated numerical tool will make these AM tech-niques highly attractive not only for bio-medical but also for aerospace applications. The holistic model of AM process based on FE, CA and LBM opens up many new research opportunities.

Others academics will benefit from:

  • Improved understanding of the properties of materials for use in numerical models;
  • Understanding the link between AM and material properties;
  • Improved understanding of advanced bioactive materials for use in medical devices;
  • Quantitative understanding of the cooperative relationships between different physical phenomena taking place in AM on different scales of consideration.