Selective laser melting (SLM) is an additive manufacturing technique in which complex parts can be fabricated directly by melting layers of powder from a CAD model. SLM has a wide range of application in biomedicine and other engineering areas and it has a series of advantages over traditional processing techniques. A large number of variables including laser power, scanning speed, scanning line spacing, layer thickness, material based input parameters, etc. have a considerable effect on SLM process materials. The interaction between these parameters is not completely studied. Limited studies on balling effect in SLM, densifications under different processing conditions, and laser re-melting, have been conducted that involved microstructural investigation. Grain boundaries are amongst the most important microstructural properties in polycrystalline materials with a significant effect on the fracture and plastic deformation. In SLM samples, in addition to the grain boundaries, the microstructure has another set of connecting surfaces between the melt pools. In this study, a computational framework is developed to model the mechanical response of SLM processed materials by considering both the grain boundaries and melt pool boundaries in the material. To this end, a 3D finite element model is developed to investigate the effect of various microstructural properties including the grains size, melt pools size, and pool connectivity on the macroscopic mechanical response of the SLM manufactured materials. A conventional microstructural model for studying polycrystalline materials is modified to incorporate the effect of connecting melt pools beside the grain boundaries. In this model, individual melt pools are approximated as overlapped cylinders each containing several grains and grain boundaries, which are modeled to be attached together by the cohesive zone method. This method has been used in modeling adhesives, bonded interfaces, gaskets, and rock fracture. A traction-separation description of the interface is used as the constitutive response of this model. Anisotropic elasticity and crystal plasticity are used as constitutive laws for the material inside the grains. For the experimental verification, stainless steel 316L flat dog bone samples are fabricated by SLM and tested in tension. During fabrication, the power of laser is constant, and the scan speed is changed to study the effect of fabrication parameters on the mechanical properties of the parts and to compare the result with the finite element model.

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