Tue, 22 June, 2021
Journal article by PhD Student Gowtham Soundarapandiyan explores post-processing of additive manufactured parts
NSIRC and Coventry University Doctoral Student Gowtham Soundarapandiyan has published a research paper in the Material Design and Processing Communications journal. This research was made possible by the sponsorship and support from Lloyd’s Register Foundation and National Structural Integrity Research Centre (NSIRC) at TWI in Cambridge, United Kingdom, an institute for industry-led higher education.
Speaking to NSIRC, Gowtham described how there is a growing interest in additive manufacturing technologies like electron beam powder bed fusion for the fabrication of high value engineering components using titanium powder feedstock material.
"Titanium powders are one of the most costly material amongst various other materials currently used in additive manufacturing and demands their efficient usage. Therefore, the left-out powder after part manufacturing is generally recovered and recycled to improve process efficiency. However, some of the recycled powder particles might have different physical and chemical characteristics due to the degradation during part manufacturing, recovery, powder handling and reuse that can affect the quality of the build parts. Therefore, it is important to understand the properties of the recycled powder, especially when it is used for manufacturing safety critical parts for aerospace applications. The present work demonstrates the nature, cause, and mechanism Ti6Al4V powder degradation, and their subsequent effect on the build properties. The results indicate that the physical and chemical changes in the powder characteristics with recycling can affect the strength, defect population and fatigue life of the final parts".
"I would like to thank my supervisors Dr Carol Johnston, Dr Raja Khan, Prof. Bo Chen and Prof. Michael Fitzpatrick for their constant support and guidance throughout this research. My warmest regards to the University of Sheffield for providing the powder feedstock and Dr. Everth Hernández-Nava for manufacturing the test coupons. I am very grateful for the strong and fruitful collaboration with Prof. Peter D. Lee and Dr. Chu Lun Alex Leung from University College London for performing the X-ray CT scans using the facilities available in Research Complex at Harwell."
PhD programme with industrial impact
Dr Carol Johnston said, "For additive manufacturing to become a widespread method of producing parts with high integrity and reliable performance, it is essential to understand the link between properties of the feedstock powder and the mechanical performance of the parts produced. This is particularly important if unused powder is recycled and reused in subsequent builds. Gowtham has done excellent work on the link between properties of the feedstock powder and mechanical properties of the built parts, focussing on recycled powder."
- EPSRC. Grant Number: EP/R043973/1
Speak to Gowtham about his research
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