Additive manufacturing (AM) enables the production of lightweight parts with complex shapes and small dimensions. Recent improvements in AM techniques have allowed a significant growth of AM for industrial applications. In particular, AM is suitable for the production of materials shaped in lattice, which are very attractive for their lightweight design and their multi-functional properties. AM parts are often characterised by geometrical imperfections, residual porosity, high surface roughness which typically lead to stress/strain localisations and decreasing the resistance of the structure. This paper aims to focus on the study of the effects of geometrical irregularities and stress concentrations derived from them.
In this paper, several technique were combined: 3D tomography, experimental tests, digital image correlation and finite elements (FE) models based on both the as-designed and the as-manufactured geometries of lattice materials. The Digital Image Correlation technique allowed to measure local deformations in the specimen during the experimental test. The micro-computed tomography allowed to reconstruct the as-manufactured geometries of the specimens, from which the geometrical quality of the micro-structure is evaluated to run FE analyses.
Experimental and numerical results were compared by means of a stress concentration factor. This factor was calculated in three different specimens obtained from three-different printing processes to compare and understand their mechanical properties. Considering the as-designed geometry, it is not possible to model geometrical imperfections, and a FE model based on an as-manufactured geometry is needed. The results show that the mechanical properties of the printed samples are directly related to the statistical distribution of the stress concentration factor.
In this work, several techniques were combined to study the mechanical behaviour of lattice micro-structures. Lattice materials obtained by different selective laser melting printing parameters show different mechanical behaviours. A stress concentration factor can be assumed as a measure of the quality of these mechanical properties.
The present research was developed within the METAMat-Lab, a laboratory supported by Politecnico di Milano. Support by the Italian Ministry for Education, University and Research through the project Department of Excellence LIS4.0 (Integrated Laboratory for Lightweight e Smart Structures) is also acknowledged.
Boniotti, L., Foletti, S., Beretta, S. and Patriarca, L. (2020), "Analysis of strain and stress concentrations in micro-lattice structures manufactured by SLM", Rapid Prototyping Journal, Vol. 26 No. 2, pp. 370-380. https://doi.org/10.1108/RPJ-10-2018-0270
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