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Open AccessArticle

Dimensional Quality and Distortion Analysis of Thin-Walled Alloy Parts of AlSi10Mg Manufactured by Selective Laser Melting

1
Department of Management Science and Engineering, School of Economics and Management, Beihang University (BUAA), Beijing 100191, China
2
Key Laboratory of Contemporary Design and Integrated Manufacturing Technology, School of Mechanical Engineering, Northwestern Polytechnical University, Shaanxi 710072, China
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
J. Manuf. Mater. Process. 2019, 3(2), 51; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmmp3020051
Received: 21 May 2019 / Revised: 18 June 2019 / Accepted: 19 June 2019 / Published: 21 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selective Laser Melting: Materials and Applications)
The quality and reliability in additive manufacturing is an emerging area. To ensure process quality and reliability, the influence of all process parameters and conditions needs to be understood. The product quality and reliability characteristics, i.e., dimensional accuracy, precision, repeatability, and reproducibility are mostly affected by inherent and systematic manufacturing process variations. This paper presents research on dimensional quality and distortion analysis of AlSi10Mg thin-walled parts developed by a selective laser melting technique. The input process parameters were fixed, and the impact of inherent process variation on dimensional accuracy and precision was studied. The process stability and variability were examined under repeatability and reproducibility conditions. The sample length (horizontal dimension) results revealed a 0.05 mm maximum dimensional error, 0.0197 mm repeatability, and 0.0169 mm reproducibility. Similarly, in sample height (vertical dimension) results, 0.258 mm maximum dimensional error, 0.0237 mm repeatability, and 0.0863 mm reproducibility were observed. The effect of varying design thickness on thickness accuracy was analyzed, and regression analysis performed. The maximum 0.038 mm error and 0.018 mm standard deviation was observed for the 1 mm thickness sample, which significantly decreased for sample thickness ≥2 mm. The % error decreased exponentially with increasing sample thickness. The distortion analysis was performed to explore the effect of sample thickness on part distortion. The 0.5 mm thickness sample shows a very high distortion comparatively, and it is reduced significantly for >0.5 mm thickness samples. The study is further extended to examine the effect of solution heat treatment and artificial aging on the accuracy, precision, and distortion; however, it did not improve the results. Conclusively, the sample dimensions, i.e., length and height, have shown fluctuations due to inherent process characteristics under repeatability and reproducibility conditions. The ANOVA results revealed that sample length means are not statistically significantly different, whereas sample height means are significantly different. The horizontal dimensions in the xy-plane have better accuracy and precision compared to the vertical dimension in the z-axis. The accuracy and precision increased, whereas part distortion decreased with increasing thickness. View Full-Text
Keywords: dimensional quality analysis; repeatability and reproducibility; process variability; distortion analysis; selective laser melting dimensional quality analysis; repeatability and reproducibility; process variability; distortion analysis; selective laser melting
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Ahmed, A.; Majeed, A.; Atta, Z.; Jia, G. Dimensional Quality and Distortion Analysis of Thin-Walled Alloy Parts of AlSi10Mg Manufactured by Selective Laser Melting. J. Manuf. Mater. Process. 2019, 3, 51.

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