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 whether the required product features for further validation can be met.
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.