WP9 – Nonplanar.DED

WP9 – Nonplanar.DED

The use of Additive Manufacturing (AM) in metal processes enables the construction of optimized components that are capable of making products with greater added value throughout the manufacturing chain. The aim of this project is to study three different AM techniques for metals in a laboratory environment and how to implement them in a factory environment.

The objective is to study the applicability of amorphous metallic materials within the scope of AM in a SLM powder bed, in order to develop components for molds, in order to make it possible to produce optical systems to be employed in the automotive sector. Because these materials do not have grain boundaries, they have greater wear resistance as well as greater corrosion resistance.

Surface quality is a concern, as this is a process that requires supports to manufacture the parts, which necessarily imply subtractive processes for surface finishing. The use of surface finishing processes is generally a given when working with molds, as a low roughness surface is required to enable the extraction of the molded plastic parts.

To mitigate some of the difficulties of the SLM powder bed process, the project also aims to use and integrate AM EBM systems into the mold production chain. This manufacturing technique is similar to the SLM technique, in that it also uses a powder bed, but the melting of the part to be produced is based on electron melting principles, not laser. The use of the EBM system allows a faster construction of parts, as it is possible to carry out larger scans when building the layers.

The process also makes it possible to obtain better surface quality when compared to the SLM process, as this process does not require supports for the construction of the part. Before the consolidation scan phase, electron scans with a lower charge are carried out in order to aggregate the powder, causing it to act as a support structure.

It is also the aim to study the use of metallic metamaterials in mold structures as a way of introducing alternative mechanical properties and behaviors that would not be possible to obtain using traditional processes and materials.

In sum, one can define the objective of this project as follows: the construction of highly optimized and specialized molds using 3 different AM techniques, so that it is possible to optimize the cycle time and, consequently, the energy cost during its use, and to improve the final quality of the obtained parts. Each of these techniques will be responsible for developing a specific part of the case study. These techniques will be studied and developed in a continuous development laboratory unit and later applied on the factory floor, so that it can be integrated into a continuous production system (TRL > 7).

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Inov.AM - Inovação em Fabricação Aditiva

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