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METALLIC MATERIALS STRENGTHENING VIA SELECTIVE LASER MELTING BY PULSED LASERS

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METALLIC MATERIALS STRENGTHENING VIA SELECTIVE LASER MELTING EMPLOYING NANOSECOND PULSED LASERS

thesis
posted on 2022-12-07, 20:32 authored by Danilo de Camargo BrancoDanilo de Camargo Branco

 The Selective Laser Melting (SLM) process is a manufacturing technique that facilitates the  production of metallic parts with complex geometries and reduces both materials waste and lead  time. The high tunability of the process parameters in SLM allows the design of the as-built part’s  characteristics, such as controlled microstructure formation, residual stresses, presence of pores,  and lack of fusion. The main parameter in the SLM process that influences these parts’  characteristics is the transient temperature field resulting from the laser-matter interaction.  Nanosecond pulsed lasers in SLM have the advantage of enabling rapid and localized heating and  cooling that make the formation of ultrafine grains possible. This work shows how different pulse  durations can change the near-surface microstructure and overall mechanical properties of metallic  parts. The nanosecond pulses can melt and resolidify aluminum parts’ near-surface region to form nanograined gradient structures with yield strengths as high as 250.8 MPa and indentation  strengths as high as 725 MPa, which are comparable to some steel's mechanical properties. Knowing that the nanosecond pulsed lasers cause microstructure refinement for high-purity metals,  the microstructure variations effects were also investigated for the cast iron alloy. Cast iron was  used alone and mixed with born or boron nitride powders to induce the precipitation of  strengthening phases only enabled under high cooling rates. Although producing parts with  superior mechanical properties and controlling the precipitation of strengthening phases, the SLM  process with nanosecond pulsed lasers is still accompanied by defects formation, mainly explained  by the large thermal gradients, keyhole effect, reduced melt pool depth, and rapid cooling rates.  Ideally, a smooth heating rate able to sinter powder grains, facilitating the heat flow through the  heat-affected zone, followed by a sharper heating rate that generates a fully molten region, but  minimizes ablation at the same time are targeted to reduce the porosity and lack of fusion. Then, a  sharp cooling rate that can increase the nucleation rate, consequently refining the final  microstructure is targeted in the production of strong materials in SLM with pulsed lasers. This  work is the pioneer in controlling the transient temperature field during the heating and cooling  stages in pulsed laser processing. The temperature field control capability by shaping a nanosecond  laser pulse in the time domain affecting defects formation, residual strains, and microstructure was  achieved, opening a wide research niche in the additive manufacturing field.  

Funding

My own.

History

Degree Type

  • Doctor of Philosophy

Department

  • Aeronautics and Astronautics

Campus location

  • West Lafayette

Advisor/Supervisor/Committee Chair

Dr. Gary J. Cheng

Advisor/Supervisor/Committee co-chair

Dr. Wenbin Yu

Additional Committee Member 2

Dr. Dianyun Zhang

Additional Committee Member 3

Dr. Michael Titus

Additional Committee Member 4

Dr. Alberto W. Mello

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