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Effect of Selective Laser Melting Process Parameters on the Quality of Al Alloy Parts: Powder Characterization, Density, Surface Roughness, and Dimensional Accuracy

Department of Mechanical Engineering, McMaster University, 1280 Main Street, West Hamilton, ON L8S 4L7, Canada
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Materials 2018, 11(12), 2343; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122343
Received: 26 October 2018 / Revised: 20 November 2018 / Accepted: 20 November 2018 / Published: 22 November 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Additive Manufacturing: Alloy Design and Process Innovations)
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Abstract

Additive manufacturing (AM) of high-strength Al alloys promises to enhance the performance of critical components related to various aerospace and automotive applications. The key advantage of AM is its ability to generate lightweight, robust, and complex shapes. However, the characteristics of the as-built parts may represent an obstacle to the satisfaction of the parts’ quality requirements. The current study investigates the influence of selective laser melting (SLM) process parameters on the quality of parts fabricated from different Al alloys. A design of experiment (DOE) was used to analyze relative density, porosity, surface roughness, and dimensional accuracy according to the interaction effect between the SLM process parameters. The results show a range of energy densities and SLM process parameters for AlSi10Mg and Al6061 alloys needed to achieve “optimum” values for each performance characteristic. A process map was developed for each material by combining the optimized range of SLM process parameters for each characteristic to ensure good quality of the as-built parts. This study is also aimed at reducing the amount of post-processing needed according to the optimal processing window detected. View Full-Text
Keywords: additive manufacturing; selective laser melting; AlSi10Mg; Al6061; SLM process parameters; performance characteristics additive manufacturing; selective laser melting; AlSi10Mg; Al6061; SLM process parameters; performance characteristics
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Maamoun, A.H.; Xue, Y.F.; Elbestawi, M.A.; Veldhuis, S.C. Effect of Selective Laser Melting Process Parameters on the Quality of Al Alloy Parts: Powder Characterization, Density, Surface Roughness, and Dimensional Accuracy. Materials 2018, 11, 2343.

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