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Open AccessArticle

Improved Mechanical Properties and Energy Absorption of BCC Lattice Structures with Triply Periodic Minimal Surfaces Fabricated by SLM

1
State Key Laboratory of Mechanical Transmission, Chongqing University, Chongqing 400044, China
2
College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences, University of Exeter, North Park Road, Exeter EX4 4QF, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Materials 2018, 11(12), 2411; https://doi.org/10.3390/ma11122411
Received: 12 November 2018 / Revised: 23 November 2018 / Accepted: 26 November 2018 / Published: 29 November 2018
The triply periodic minimal surface (TPMS) method is a novel approach for lattice design in a range of fields, such as impact protection and structural lightweighting. In this paper, we used the TPMS formula to rapidly and accurately generate the most common lattice structure, named the body centered cubic (BCC) structure, with certain volume fractions. TPMS-based and computer aided design (CAD) based BCC lattice structures with volume fractions in the range of 10–30% were fabricated by selective laser melting (SLM) technology with Ti–6Al–4V and subjected to compressive tests. The results demonstrated that local geometric features changed the volume and stress distributions, revealing that the TPMS-based samples were superior to the CAD-based ones, with elastic modulus, yield strength and compression strength increasing in the ranges of 18.9–42.2%, 19.2–29.5%, and 2–36.6%, respectively. The failure mechanism of the TPMS-based samples with a high volume fraction changed to brittle failure observed by scanning electron microscope (SEM), as their struts were more affected by the axial force and fractured on struts. It was also found that the TPMS-based samples have a favorable capacity to absorb energy, particularly with a 30% volume fraction, the energy absorbed up to 50% strain was approximately three times higher than that of the CAD-based sample with an equal volume fraction. Furthermore, the theoretic Gibson–Ashby mode was established in order to predict and design the mechanical properties of the lattice structures. In summary, these results can be used to rapidly create BCC lattice structures with superior compressive properties for engineering applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: lattice structures; mechanical properties; energy absorbing; triply periodic minimal surface; selective laser melting lattice structures; mechanical properties; energy absorbing; triply periodic minimal surface; selective laser melting
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Zhao, M.; Liu, F.; Fu, G.; Zhang, D.Z.; Zhang, T.; Zhou, H. Improved Mechanical Properties and Energy Absorption of BCC Lattice Structures with Triply Periodic Minimal Surfaces Fabricated by SLM. Materials 2018, 11, 2411.

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