Particle-based simulations and dimensional analysis of selective laser sintering of PA12 powders
A numerical model based on the Smoothed particle Hydrodynamics (SPH) method is developed for 2D and 3D simulations of the laser sintering process of polyamide 12 (PA12) powder on the grain scale. Melt track simulations yield detailed insights in the visco-thermal dynamics of the process including the porosity evolution. The simulations are validated by measurements of the transient surface temperature. A dimensional analysis of the process allows for quantification of the importance of all infolved physical mechanisms and predicts the magnitudes of the observable phyical quantitis with good accuracy.