The Predictive Power of Simulation Software
Simulations can be used to predict the deformations, residual stresses and temperature evolution in parts during and after the AM process. By facilitating these simulations, you can identify and correct the regions sensitive to failure to increase the chance of a successful build, as well as the overall part quality.
To demonstrate the predictive power of simulation, we used the design of the lightweight insert to simulate the outcome of the printing process. To validate the simulation results, we manufactured and measured the part using 3D scanning after the printing process. Then we compared the measured and simulated deformations.
- We first started with creating a calibration profile for the machine in Magics simulation software. We did this by printing a test specimen and measuring the deformation after removal from the base plate. Next, we used the Magics simulation module to automatically find the right simulation parameters (eigenstrains) for the machine, material and scan parameters.
- We sliced the CAD file and generated a mesh for the design
- We applied the values obtained from step one to the mesh and applied the inherent strains to each simulation layer
- We simulated the support removal and removal from the building plate
- Finally, we compared the final simulated deformation with the original CAD design to identify regions with critical deformations