QuesTek wins US Air Force Research Lab AM modelling challenge

July 29, 2020

The US Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) and America Makes have announced that QuesTek Innovations, Evanston, Illinois, USA, has won the Additive Manufacturing Modelling Challenge ‘Macro-scale Structure-to-Properties Predictions’ to improve the understanding and modelling capability of the complex linkage of process-structure-performance of AM built components.

The goal of the AFRL Challenge Series was to improve the accuracy of model predictions for metal Additive Manufacturing with Inconel® 625 nickel-chromium alloy (IN625) as an example. Challenge participants were provided with high-pedigree calibration and validation datasets needed to develop new models directly related to predicting the internal structure and resultant performance of AM metallic components.

After reviewing all the entries, QuesTek’s submission was ranked as Top Performer for the most accurate prediction of key material properties such as strength, elongation, and modulus of elasticity. The inputs provided to QuesTek were limited to printed component geometry and dimensions, alloy compositions, as-printed and heat-treated microstructures, surface roughness and porosity.

“QuesTek has successfully demonstrated the ability to predict microstructures and properties across a range of alloy systems in metal AM including nickel, aluminium, titanium and steel. We are aware of a significant market need for such a capability, and we are currently incorporating this into a comprehensive software package,” stated Dr. Jiadong Gong, QuesTek’s Technical Fellow and Manager of Modelling and Software Development.

“This package will be able to predict AM materials property and component performance by inputting powder chemistry, machine build parameters and subsequent thermal processing, and will enable rapid qualification of materials and components for critical applications,” added Gong.

To date, QuesTek has been awarded more than sixty projects to understand the fundamental metallurgy and resolve the most pressing materials issues in metal AM. In formulating its response to the AFRL Challenge, QuesTek drew on similar modelling efforts in DARPA’s Open Manufacturing project with Honeywell on Ni 718Plus, a NASA STTR project on IN718, as well as QuesTek’s role in the US Navy’s Quality Made program on IN625 nickel Superalloys.

In the latest issue of Metal AM magazine

Download PDF

Extensive AM industry news coverage, as well as the following exclusive deep-dive articles:

  • The GRCop story: The development, production and Additive Manufacturing of NASA’s rocket engine alloys
  • Formnext 2023: Innovations in metal Additive Manufacturing from the industry’s leading international exhibition
  • Cybersecurity in Additive Manufacturing: Securing the industry’s future
  • Additive Manufacturing in the jewellery industry: exploring the potential of platinum and titanium
  • Mission possible: The five-year plan to gain FAA and EASA acceptance of in-process monitoring

The world of metal AM to your inbox

Don't miss any new issue of Metal AM magazine, and get the latest industry news. Sign up to our twice weekly newsletter.

Sign up

Discover our magazine archive…

The free to access Metal Additive Manufacturing magazine archive offers unparalleled insight into the world of metal Additive Manufacturing from a commercial and technological perspective through:

  • Reports on visits to leading metal AM part manufacturers and industry suppliers
  • Articles on technology and application trends
  • Information on materials developments
  • Reviews of key technical presentations from the international conference circuit
  • International industry news

All past issues are available to download as free PDFs or view in your browser.

Browse the archive

Looking for AM machines, metal powders or part manufacturing services?

Discover suppliers of these and more in our comprehensive advertisers’ index and buyer’s guide, available in the back of Metal AM magazine.

  • AM machines
  • Process monitoring & calibration
  • Heat treatment & sintering
  • HIP systems & services
  • Pre- & post-processing technology
  • Powders, powder production and analysis
  • Part manufacturers
  • Consulting, training & market data
View online
Share via
Copy link
Powered by Social Snap