last updated 24/04/2019

ALMA (ICON)

Additive Layer Manufacturing for Aerospace

ALMA fits within the SIM-program STREAM “Structural Engineering materials using Additive Manufacturing”.

The ALMA research traject comprises two phases:

phase 1 is an ICON and phase 2 comprises the validation phase, which will be further elaborated in detail at the end of phase 1, depending on the results obtained.

Up to now, Metal Additive Manufacturing (MAM) for aerospace applications are limited to secondary class 3 components (brackets, smaller engine and auxiliary components). The main goal of the ALMA-ICON project is to explore the boundaries of AM-metal powders (Ti Al, high strength stainless steel) for the more critical class 2 aerospace components manufactured with AM Powder Bed Fusion (PBF) technology. Different post-processing treatments (HIP, surface finishing) will be examined in order to obtain the fatigue properties, required for aerospace class 2 parts. Model simulations will serve as fundamental tools to enhance the insight in mechanical behaviour (fatigue properties and prediction of fatigue life), to analyse the thermo-mechanical deformations originated during printing, to validate an alternative inspection technique and to support the microstructure investigation.

The ultimate goal of ALMA is to prove in phase 2 of the traject, the technical maturity level of manufacturing structural class 2 components by AM-PBF technology by means of a successful demonstrator that complies with the aeroplane constructor specifications.

Research Program overview

The SIM research program STREAM is an acronym for STRuctural Engineering materials through Additive Manufacturing: 3D printing of structural materials by increasing the knowledge base about additive manufacturing of polymers and metals, with emphasis on the material properties.
Vertical Program
Started: 01/12/2013