The increasing concern about noise pollution has accelerated the development of acoustic absorption and damping devices. However, conventional subtractive manufacturing can only fabricate absorption devices with simple geometric shapes that are unable to achieve high absorption coefficients in wide frequency ranges. In this paper, novel multi-layer micro-perforated panels (MPPs) with tunable wideband absorption are designed and fabricated by 3D printing or additive manufacturing. Selective laser sintering (SLS), which is an advanced powder-based 3D printing technique, is newly introduced for MPP manufacturing with polyamide 12 as the feedstock. The acoustic performances of the MPPs are investigated by theoretical, numerical, and experimental methods. The results reveal that the absorption frequency bandwidths of the structures are wider than those of conventional single-layer MPPs, while the absorption coefficients remain comparable or even higher. The frequency ranges can be tuned by varying the air gap distances and the inter-layer distances. Furthermore, an optimization method is introduced for structural designs of MPPs with the most effective sound absorption performances in the target frequency ranges. This study reveals the potential of 3D printing to fabricate acoustic devices with effective tunable sound absorption behaviors and provides an optimization method for future structural design of the wideband sound absorption devices.
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