Ali Abadi has developed a model that simulates metal and heat transfer in additive manufacturing with titanium wire. The model makes it easier to control the manufacturing process. Photo: Högskolan Väst.
The aerospace industry and many other sectors are constantly looking for more efficient and more sustainable manufacturing methods. Laser-based AM with filler wire is an interesting alternative to conventional manufacturing technology. The technology is used in certain product areas, but each new application requires extensive research.
University West has cutting-edge expertise within metal-based AM, and carries out research to develop and adapt the technology for different materials and applications to ensure that quality requirements are met. One important task is to make the manufacturing process robust and reliable. Here, simulation models are of great benefit in showing how the process works in virtual form, and a lengthy series of tests using prototypes can thus be avoided.
“Simulation models save a lot of time and materials when developing manufacturing processes,” explains Ali. “I have developed a model that simulates metal and heat transfer in additive manufacturing with titanium wire. Many different parameters affect melting, and it’s important to understand what is happening in the process in order to keep it stable. The model makes it easier to control the process.”
Ali has worked closely alongside aerospace engine manufacturer GKN Aerospace in Trollhättan.
“Using data from GKN’s physical experiments with titanium, I have been able to further develop existing software,” he explains. “To validate the results of the simulation, we then carried out a large number of experiments.”
Components for aerospace engines have extremely high quality requirements. Before components can be brought into use, manufacturing processes must be optimised to ensure that no defects exist or can arise in the materials. The simulation model developed by Ali can be further developed for use in laser- and wire-based AM with other metals and for other products.
“I benefit extensively from my doctoral studies and my knowledge of simulation models in my new job as a simulation engineer at Nibe in Trollhättan. Nibe manufactures products including heat pumps, and faces very different challenges compared to the aviation industry. Nevertheless, several aspects of the development work are reminiscent of the work I have carried out within the aerospace industry.”
Ali has been part of the team behind the successful SAMw research project. He defended his doctoral thesis on 2 November at University West.
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