Global standards developer ASTM International, based in West Conshohocken, Pennsylvania, USA, has announced its second round of funding to support research that helps expedite standards in Additive Manufacturing. This investment of $300,000 and in-kind contributions will support ASTM International Additive Manufacturing Center of Excellence’s goal of addressing pressing needs for technical standardisation in the industry.
“We are thrilled to fund some of the most crucial and high-impact research projects in Additive Manufacturing to accelerate standardisation,” stated Dr Mohsen Seifi, ASTM International’s Director of Global Additive Manufacturing Programs, during a workshop in Senlis, France, organised by the centre.
He added that these nine projects will complement the previous round of five, each with the aim of contributing towards a holistic approach to filling standards gaps in design, feedstock, process, post processing, testing and qualification. The projects, approved by an ASTM International subcommittee focused on research and innovation (F42.90.05), include the following topics relevant to metal AM:
Auburn University will work to implement a rapid, efficient, and effective inspection process to detect potential part quality issues after fabrication through Laser Powder Bed Fusion (L-PBF). The study aims to identify and quantify deviations in build and material quality through a series of tests performed within a few hours after the part is removed from the AM system.
In addition, Auburn University and NASA will partner to continue work from Phase l of a previously funded project that developed consensus regarding the minimum requirements for qualifying L-PBF machines and processes. In Phase ll, the team will establish qualitative and quantitative metrics for evaluation methods, conduct round-robin trials and establish recommendations for standards implementation.
Applied technology developer EWI aims to leverage overall advances in digital data acquisition, automation and data analysis. EWI will work to define a minimum subset of AM data entries and taxonomy of those entries. The resulting standard will help establish best practices for data sharing, a common data dictionary for AM, and a data management roadmap that integrates stakeholder needs.
The UK-based Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC) will address the lack of guidelines for what is deemed an acceptable test result in powder feedstock test methods. This operator proficiency study – which will leverage findings from ASTM International’s AM Proficiency Testing Program – aims to help stakeholders understand acceptable test results as well as typical variation in results from different labs.
In an additional project, MTC will work to address the growing number of post-processing issues tied to inefficient designs, cost, high non-conformity and scrap rates. They will develop a guide that proposes best practices in design for each type of post-processing operation, with each topic possibly being further developed by research or standardisation.
Singapore’s National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Cluster (NAMIC) will use off-axial monitoring to acquire optical and thermal images from the L-PBF process. Image analysis will allow them to extract structured data, ultimately helping develop a procedure to construct a 3D file embedding with parameters both representing the printing process and quality evaluation.
Additionally, NAMIC will conduct research to form guidelines and best practices specific to Directed Energy Deposition (DED) and material extrusion (MEX), two processes of high interest to manufacturers and designers. These guides will provide an overall document structure and guidelines for standard development.