SIM-AM 2023

Validation of multiple aspects of a holistic PBF-LB/M modelling and simulation chain at particle scale

  • Dietemann, Bastien (Fraunhofer IWM)
  • Najuch, Tim (Fraunhofer IWM)
  • Butz, Alexander (Fraunhofer IWM)
  • Bierwisch, Claas (Fraunhofer IWM)

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A holistic numerical simulation of the laser-beam powder bed fusion process for metals (PBF-LB/M) at particle scale is challenging due to the great variety of physical phenomena taking place simultaneously. To overcome this challenge, we use a combination of simulation models that we found most promising to represent each aspect ranging from the deposition of powder until the resulting material properties. The Discrete Element Method (DEM) is used for powder spreading simulations yielding realistic powder layers. Ray tracing (RT) is employed to calculate the laser energy deposition in the material including multiple reflections. Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) simulations are then used to study the thermo-viscous and thermo-capillary flow of the melt pool. Material properties required for the SPH simulations are obtained from thermodynamic CALPHAD simulations. The temperature field of the melt pool is coupled to a Cellular Automaton (CA), which calculates the growth of dendritic grains and, thus, provides a prediction for the size and shape of microstructure grains formed during solidification. This microstructure serves then as input for Crystal Plasticity Finite Element Method (CP-FEM) simulations to qualitatively describe texture dependent mechanical properties such as the elastic modulus or the yield stress. A series of validation cases using different materials will be presented: A posteriori measured melt pool dimensions are assessed for Inconel 718 while in situ melt pool dynamics are studied for TI6Al4V [1]. The transition from conduction mode to keyhole mode as function of scan speed and energy input is compared for several alloys [2]. Residual porosity and lack of fusion are analyzed for a novel Al-Ni alloy. The microstructure grain morphology is compared for AlSi10Mg. Quantitative agreement or distinct qualitative correspondence between simulations and experiments is found in all of these cases. In summary, using the presented models and simulation methods, the PBF-LB/M process can be investigated with a high degree of detail. This does not completely replace corresponding experiments, but provides new ways to a deepened understanding of process-structure-property relationships. Thereby, the manufacturing of existing material systems can be improved and the development of new alloys for the PBF-LB/M process is supported. [1] R. Cunningham et al., Science (2019). [2] S. Patel et al., Materialia (2020).