The reliability and performance qualification of additively manufactured metal parts is critical for their successful and safe use in engineering applications. In current powder-bed fusion type metal additive manufacturing processes, local thermal accumulations affect material microstructure features, overall part quality and integrity, as well as bulk mechanical behavior. To address such challenges, the investigation presented in this manuscript describes a novel digital design approach combining topology optimization, process simulations, and lattice size optimization to address local thermal effects caused during manufacturing. Specifically, lattices are introduced in regions of topology optimized geometries where local thermal accumulations are predicted using the process simulations with the overall goal to mitigate high thermal gradients. The results presented demonstrate that the proposed digital design approach reduces local thermal accumulations while achieving target mechanical performance metrics. A discussion on how post-manufacturing heat treatment effects could be also considered, as well as comments on the computational implementation of the proposed approach are provided.
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