Modeling and Simulation of Functionalized Materials for Additive Manufacturing and 3D Printing: Continuous and Discrete Media: Continuum and Discrete … Notes in Applied and Computational Mechanics)

Within the last decade, several industrialized countries have stressed the importance of advanced manufacturing to their economies. Many of these plans have highlighted the development of additive manufacturing techniques, such as 3D printing which, as of 2018, are still in their infancy. The objective is to develop superior products, produced at lower overall operational costs. For these goals to be realized, a deep understanding of the essential ingredients comprising the materials involved in additive manufacturing is needed. The combination of rigorous material modeling theories, coupled with the dramatic increase of computational power can potentially play a significant role in the analysis, control, and design of many emerging additive manufacturing processes. Specialized materials and the precise design of their properties are key factors in the processes. Specifically, particle-functionalized materials play a central role in this field, in three main regimes:

 (1) to enhance overall filament-based material properties, by embedding particles within a binder, which is then passed through a heating element and the deposited onto a surface,

 (2) to “functionalize” inks by adding particles to freely flowing solvents forming a mixture, which is then deposited onto a surface and

 (3) to directly deposit particles, as dry powders, onto surfaces and then to heat them with a laser, e-beam or other external source, in order to fuse them into place.

The goal of these processes is primarily to build surface structures which are extremely difficult to construct using classical manufacturing methods. The objective of this monograph is introduce the readers to basic techniques which can allow them to rapidly develop and analyze particulate-based materials needed in such additive manufacturing processes. This monograph is broken into two main parts: “Continuum Method” (CM) approaches and “Discrete Element Method” (DEM) approaches. The materials associated with methods (1) and (2) are closely related types of continua (particles embedded in a continuous binder) and are treated using continuum approaches. The materials in method (3), which are of a discrete particulate character, are analyzed using discrete element methods.

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Standards, Quality Control, and Measurement Sciences in 3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing

Standards, Quality Control and Measurement Sciences in 3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing addresses the critical elements of the standards and measurement sciences in 3D printing to help readers design and create safe, reliable products of high quality. With 3D printing revolutionizing the process of manufacturing in a wide range of products, the book takes key features into account, such as design and fabrication and the current state and future potentials and opportunities in the field. In addition, the book provides an in-depth analysis on the importance of standards and measurement sciences.

With self-test exercises at the end of each chapter, readers can improve their ability to take up challenges and become proficient in a number of topics related to 3D printing, including software usage, materials specification and benchmarking.

  • Helps the reader understand the quality framework tailored for 3D printing processes
  • Explains data format and process control in 3D printing
  • Provides an overview of different materials and characterization methods
  • Covers benchmarking and metrology for 3D printing

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From Additive Manufacturing to 3D Printing: Breakthrough Innovations: Programmable Material, 4D Printing and Bio-printing

With a turnover of some 5-15 billion € / year, the additive manufacturing has industrial niches bearers thanks to processes and materials more and more optimized. While some niches still exist on the application of additive techniques in traditional fields (from jewelery to food for example), several trends emerge, using new concepts: collective production, realization of objects at once (without addition Of material), micro-fluidic, 4D printing exploiting programmable materials and materials, bio-printing, etc. There are both opportunities for new markets, promises not envisaged less than 10 years ago, but difficulties in reaching them.

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Trends in Additive Manufacturing for end-use production with LPW Technology

3D Printing Industry is taking an in depth look at how additive manufacturing is moving to production. Over the coming weeks the results of interviews with industry leading practitioners will be published.

This article is part of a series examining Trends in Additive Manufacturing for End-Use Production.

Ben Ferrar is Chief Operating Officer at LPW Technology Ltd. As suppliers of well defined powders and services to support production customers and research partners, LPW is dedicated to making Additive Manufacturing a reality in critical production environments.

3D Printing Industry: What is your percentage estimate of how much your materials are used for AM production versus other applications?

Ben Ferrar: LPW’s comprehensive range of metal powders is fully characterised and optimised exclusively for AM – we don’t manufacture for any other sector – which is one of the reasons why our powders are used in over 50% of the AM machines installed worldwide.

The difficulty with the question is, how do we define ‘production’? If you were to consider both full production – tens of machines producing thousands of parts for a period of years, and serial production – several machines producing the same part (or customised designs of the same application) for months, together, then that would account for circa 50% of our powder sales. The other 50% is used for prototyping, in bureaus, universities, and Research and Development facilities.

It’s the combination of all of these approaches that will lead to the level of understanding of AM that will eventually see it regarded simply as a reliable production method, no longer a novel disruptive technology.

3DPI: Do you have an estimate of the addressable market for AM in production?

BF: We estimate that 1,000 of the 3,000 AM machines worldwide could be considered in production, using the definitions above, rather than prototyping.

3DPI: Which industries are leading in the use of AM for production?

BF: Several sectors are already in the vanguard of technical development and serial production for AM. AM is application-driven, the key to capitalising on the benefits it can offer is identifying the designs and components where it adds value. For example, in aerospace, IGT and energy, this is light-weighting, creating complex internal channels, and consolidating components; in medical applications, it’s integrating porous geometrics and introducing customisation. As these industries demonstrate the advantages of utilising AM, so others such as automotive are following.

GE, among others, is certainly helping to drive the adoption of AM technologies by publicising its commitment to the sector, and by bringing investment into the supply chain.

3DPI: What barriers does AM face for production and how are these surmountable? 

BF: In manufacturing, cost is always an important consideration. We are finding that at this point, many of the companies moving towards production are less concerned about the cost of implementation than they are about the cost of getting it wrong. Managing the risk associated with introducing a disruptive technology into production cycles is one of the biggest barriers to overcome.

Powder degradation, contamination, and management of the powder throughout its lifecycle, are all areas where producers can lack confidence. Here at LPW we view AM from the perspective of the powder – using high-quality metal feedstock will give the best possible chance of achieving the required mechanical properties in the final built part. The most important metric is not necessarily powder cost per kg but overall cost per part. If you get a longer life from a better powder, often the part cost is less.

We believe that supporting manufacturers by giving them the tools to control their feedstock will improve repeatability and accelerate the adoption of AM. To do this, we’ve developed end to end solutions with PowderLife, a suite of software and hardware that will transport, store, monitor, quarantine, track and trace powders. In this way, we’re reducing risk and adding confidence in the production process.

3DPI:  Are there any notable trends in AM for end use production?

BF: Industries are choosing to manufacture low volume, high-value components to learn about the technology, which makes sense. However, the validation and sustainability of the mechanical properties of high volume components for critical applications will be the tipping point for wide-scale uptake of AM technologies.

3DPI: Can you name any specific case studies where AM is used for end use production?

BF: Many of our customers ask us not to share their details, or even their industry specifics. However, we can say production ranges from IGT repair and aerospace hydraulic applications to medical devices and guides.

3DPI: Is there anything else you’d like to highlight in this area?

BF: New AM alloys will open up many new opportunities for AM, but they are still some way off being used widely. One of the key factors is timescales: AM is being used NOW and must leverage alloys which were designed for other processing routes.

New alloys will unlock more of the potential of AM in the future, but each will be subjected to acceptance and validation for its particular application(s). In industries like aerospace, this might take many years. It’s a good time to be exploring these materials, but this should not divert efforts away from existing alloys where there is still interesting work to be done and improvements to be made.

At LPW we’re investing in the future of alloy development, and working hard to refine, update and tighten the specifications for existing materials to ensure they deliver the results and mechanical properties that manufacturers demand.  

Nominations for the 2018 3D Printing Industry Awards are now open. Let us know who is leading the industry.

For more information about LPW Technology Ltd is available here.

This article is part of a series examining Trends in Additive Manufacturing for End-Use Production.

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Additive Manufacturing of Metals: From Fundamental Technology to Rocket Nozzles, Medical Implants, and Custom Jewelry (Springer Series in Materials Science)

This engaging volume presents the exciting new technology of additive manufacturing (AM) of metal objects for a broad audience of academic and industry researchers, manufacturing professionals, undergraduate and graduate students, hobbyists, and artists. Innovative applications ranging from rocket nozzles to custom jewelry to medical implants illustrate a new world of freedom in design and fabrication, creating objects otherwise not possible by conventional means.

The author describes the various methods and advanced metals used to create high value components, enabling readers to choose which process is best for them. Of particular interest is how harnessing the power of lasers, electron beams, and electric arcs, as directed by advanced computer models, robots, and 3D printing systems, can create otherwise unattainable objects.

A timeline depicting the evolution of metalworking, accelerated by the computer and information age, ties AM metal technology to the rapid evolution of global technology trends. Charts, diagrams, and illustrations complement the text to describe the diverse set of technologies brought together in the AM processing of metal. Extensive listing of terms, definitions, and acronyms provides the reader with a quick reference guide to the language of AM metal processing. The book directs the reader to a wealth of internet sites providing further reading and resources, such as vendors and service providers, to jump start those interested in taking the first steps to establishing AM metal capability on whatever scale. The appendix provides hands-on example exercises for those ready to engage in experiential self-directed learning.

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