Process simulation

Current developments

Simulation of production steps in powder technology

Based on innovative material models, the individual process steps in the manufacturing of powder technological components can be simulated numerically. Based on the results, the process steps can be optimized. This shortens the development times for parts with precise shapes, free of cracks, and reduces production costs. The spectrum of materials investigated includes powder metallurgical materials such as sintered steel and hard metal as well as technical and utility ceramics.

Simulations of process parameters of the SLM

In selective laser, melting, high spatial and temporal temperature gradients lead to residual stresses and distortion. By means of the incremental borehole method, a depth profile of the residual stresses for different temperatures of the component and different scanning strategies could be determined. The generative manufacturing at a higher component temperature strongly contributes to reduce the residual stresses. An optimized scanning strategy reduces the residual stresses even further.

Simulation of the stereolithography process

The interplay of increasing stiffness, decreasing flow ability and volumetric changes due to polymerization shrinkage and thermal expansion of the stereo lithography resin during curing leads to internal stresses and distortion. Simulations close to the process can predict these and contribute to the optimization of the process steps. A material model has been developed for light-curing resins that describes the course of the elastic, viscous and viscoelastic components of the deformation response during curing. The material model can be parameterized by suitable experiments. Simulation results on distortion show a good agreement with experimental results.

Our services

Design and simulation of complex structured components

With Selective Laser Melting as a rapid prototyping and rapid manufacturing process, metallic and ceramic components and tools are produced.

The work of the Fraunhofer Competence Field Additive Manufacturing includes process engineering, physical and materials science fundamentals, modeling to support and optimize process development, and the development of components for beam guidance and shaping, powder supply, and process monitoring and control. We also develop and install complete pilot plants.

Development of material models and simulation tools for additive processes

In many industries today, standard products from CAD modular systems are used. However, the last components that have the actual contact with the product are manufactured to a great expense and effort, either individually for each product or in single pieces or very small series.

With additive manufacturing processes, the institutes improve not only the quality of partial functionalities selectively; they also directly manufacture entire functional assemblies that are ready for use without any assembly steps.