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Stress-limiting test structures for rapid low-cost strength and stiffness assessment

Andrew Katz (Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida, United States.)
Justin Nussbaum (Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida, United States.)
Craig P Lusk (Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida, United States.)
Nathan B Crane (Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida, United States.)

Rapid Prototyping Journal

ISSN: 1355-2546

Article publication date: 16 March 2015

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the use of a simple printed geometry to estimate mechanical properties (elastic modulus, yield strength) with inexpensive test equipment.

Design/methodology/approach

Test geometry is presented that enables controlled strains with manual deformation and repeatable measurement of vibrational frequencies. This is tested with multiple fused deposition modeling (FDM) machines to assess measurement accuracy and repeatability. Printing orientation and some printing parameters are varied to assess the measurement sensitivity.

Findings

The test methods show good correlation with manufacturer material specifications in the X-Y plane and reported elastic strain limits. It is also sensitive to printing orientation and printing parameters.

Research limitations/implications

Further work is needed to assess the sensitivity of the method to particular defects and parameter errors expected in particular applications.

Originality/value

This method supports process monitoring in production environments and inexpensive assessments of material properties for hobbyist and do-i- yourself users. While it is tested with FDM, it should be applicable to other additive manufacturing processes.

Keywords

Citation

Katz, A., Nussbaum, J., Lusk, C.P. and Crane, N.B. (2015), "Stress-limiting test structures for rapid low-cost strength and stiffness assessment", Rapid Prototyping Journal, Vol. 21 No. 2, pp. 144-151. https://doi.org/10.1108/RPJ-12-2014-0170

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2015, Emerald Group Publishing Limited