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3D laser metal deposition: Process steps for additive manufacturing

: Graf, Benjamin; Marko, Angelina; Petrat, Torsten; Gumenyuk, Andrey; Rethmeier, Michael


Welding in the world 62 (2018), Nr.4, S.877-883
ISSN: 0043-2288
ISSN: 1878-6669
Fraunhofer IPK ()
laser metal deposition; build-up strategy; deposition rate; additive manufacturing

Laser metal deposition (LMD) is an established technology for two-dimensional surface coatings. It offers high deposition rates, high material flexibility, and the possibility to deposit material on existing components. Due to these features, LMD has been increasingly applied for additive manufacturing of 3D structures in recent years. Compared to previous coating applications, additive manufacturing of 3D structures leads to new challenges regarding LMD process knowledge. In this paper, the process steps for LMD as additive manufacturing technology are described. The experiments are conducted using titanium alloy Ti-6Al-4V and Inconel 718. Only the LMD nozzle is used to create a shielding gas atmosphere. This ensures the high geometric flexibility needed for additive manufacturing, although issues with the restricted size and quality of the shielding gas atmosphere arise. In the first step, the influence of process parameters on the geometric dimensions of single weld beads is analyzed based on design of experiments. In the second step, a 3D build-up strategy for cylindrical specimen with high dimensional accuracy is described. Process parameters, travel paths, and cooling periods between layers are adjusted. Tensile tests show that mechanical properties in the as-deposited condition are close to wrought material. As practical example, the fir-tree root profile of a turbine blade is manufactured. The feasibility of LMD as additive technology is evaluated based on this component.