Currently funded project

Industrial production of 3D printed components using high density green bodies (IN3HOG)

Motivation

© FIT AG
Process steps Layered Powder Metallurgy from left to right - 1. powder application ; 2. pressing ; 3. wax application
© Fraunhofer-Centre HTL
Process steps Binder Jetting from left to right - 1. powder application ; 2. binder application ; 3. binder drying

Selective Laser Melting (SLM) and Electron Beam Melting (EBM) have so far dominated the field of 3D printing of metals. Both processes enable flexible component production at high speed. However, selective melting of metal powders by means of laser or electron beam is associated with a high energy input. Furthermore, the temperature gradients generated in the powder bed restrict the metal alloys that can be processed and the component geometries. The two 3D printing processes Layered Powder Metallurgy (LPM) and Binder-Jetting (BJ) represent two alternatives which shall be evaluated and optimised with regard to industrial application.



Objective

Measuring set-up for determining viscous parameters under cyclic load
© Fraunhofer-Centre HTL
Measuring set-up for determining viscous parameters under cyclic load

The aim of the project is to develop an energy-efficient and economical powder bed process with subsequent heat treatment for additive industrial production for the first time. To achieve this, the density and homogeneity of the green body shall be significantly increased by using modified aluminium and steel powders and a new type of post-compaction. Process simulation shall be used to provide an adapted a-priori design of the printend components which takes the heat treatment and leads to a 3D production in final shape into account.

 

Approach

Simulation of sintering distortion of a 3D-printed component
© Fraunhofer-Centre HTL
Simulation of sintering distortion of a 3D-printed component
  • Optimisation and qualification of two 3D printing processes Layered Powder Metallurgy (LPM) and Binder-Jetting (BJ) for industrial applications
  • Development of aluminium and stell powders with adapted properties, e.g. flowability, packing and sintering behaviour
  • Further development of in-situ measurement methods for the investigation of direction-dependent sintering and creep behaviour
  • Development of predictive simulation models for the consideration of sintering distortion in component design
  • Optimisation of the heating processes (debinding and sintering)
  • Economic and technological evaluation of the processes

Project Data

Project Duration 01.05.2020 - 30.04.2023
Sponsor
Bavarian Joint Research Programme (BayVFP)
Materials promotion line
Funding Amount 402,500 Euro

Project Partners

 

Fraunhofer-Centre HTL
FIT Additive Manufacturing Group
Eckart GmbH
Project Coordination FIT Additive Manufacturing Group
Project Management at the HTL Dr. Holger Friedrich