​An automatic path planning of an additive manufacturing process in the IPS software.
​Imag​e credit: Fredrik Edelvik, Fraunhofer-Chalmers Centre

Productivity in additive manufacturing by process and geometry simulation

We develop novel methods, algorithms and software tools for planning of efficient motions, detailed multiphysics simulation and geometry assurance of the additive manufacturing process.
Productivity in powder additive manufacturing is strongly dependent on process parameters, powder properties as well as the required component properties. In general, the standard processes established are empirical compromises between powder size, bed thickness and process parameters, aiming to reach the highest productivity (by increased build speed) and desired properties of the components. Lack of theoretical understanding on the complex interplay between micro-scale and macro-scale properties and the limited possibility to perform online measurements make it almost impossible to define an optimal process window. Therefore, there is a great need for developing novel modeling, simulation and optimization techniques for the additive manufacturing process.  

Two initiatives

​In each research area there are specific ongoing initiatives. In this area, there are two:​​

  1. Increased AM productivity by multiphysics process simulation 
    Metal additive manufacturing involves a number of coupled physical phenomena occurring at different scales. Therefore, a multiphysics model, which takes process parameters such as powder particle size, powder bed thickness, heat input on the local scale determined by the spot size and energy of the source (laser or electron beam), phase transition as well as scanning speed into account, is needed. However, to best utilize the simulation capabilities models with different level of detail need to be developed to gain detailed understanding of the AM process, and as an aid to choose process parameters or designing geometries, to optimize build paths and for variation simulation.
  2. Geometry simulation and curve generation 
    Geometric variation is present in every manufacturing process and can lead to quality problem during production or during use. The aim is to develop fast approximate methods that enable us to simulate the effect of variation. Since previous research has shown that part variability in additive manufacturing is one of the main research challenges, new methods and tools for designing robust processes for additive manufacturing are critical.

A multiphysics simulation of additive manufacturing including a physics-based melt pool model. Image credit: Fredrik Edelvik, Fraunhofer-Chalmers Centre

Research Area Leaders 

Assoc. Prof. Fredrik Edelvik, Fraunhofer-Chalmers Centre and Dr. Stefan Jakobsson from Arcam AB

Researchers involved 

Dr. Samuel Lorin, Fraunhofer-Chalmers Centre
Simon Ingelsten, PhD student, Fraunhofer-Chalmers Centre
Johan Göhl, Fraunhofer-Chalmers Centre
Jonas Kressin, Fraunhofer-Chalmers Centre
Dr. Robert Bohlin, Fraunhofer-Chalmers Centre
Dr. Johan S. Carlson, Fraunhofer-Chalmers Centre
Prof. Per Nylén, University West
Prof. Rikard Söderberg, Chalmers​
Vaishak Sagar, PhD student, Chalmers

Partners involved

Fraunhofer-Chalmers Centre, Chalmers, Alfa Laval, Arcam, GKN Aerospace, Siemens ITAB, Volvo Car Corporation, Volvo GTO, and Cascade Control.


Published: Mon 12 Feb 2018. Modified: Thu 15 Mar 2018