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Exploring the Role of Manufacturing Parameters on Microstructure and Mechanical Properties in Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) Using PETG

Özen, Arda; Abali, Bilen Emek; Völlmecke, Christina; Gerstel, Jonathan; Auhl, Dietmar

Additive manufacturing develops rapidly, especially, fused deposition modeling (FDM) is one of the economical methods with moderate tolerances and high design flexibility. Ample studies are being undertaken for modeling the mechanical characteristics of FDM by using the Finite Element Method (FEM). Even in use of amorphous materials, FDM creates anisotropic structures effected by the chosen manufacturing parameters. In order to investigate these process-related characteristics and tailored properties of FDM structures, we prepare FDM-printed poly(ethylene terephthalate) glycol (PETG) samples with different process parameters. Mechanical and optical characterizations are carried out. We develop 2D-digital-image-correlation code with machine learning algorithm, namely K-means cluster, to analyze microstructures (contact surfaces, the changes in fiber shapes) and calculate porosity. By incorporating these characteristics, we draw CAD images. A digital twin of mechanical laboratory tests are realized by the FEM. We use computational homogenization approach for obtaining the effective properties of the FDM-related anisotropic structure. These simulations are validated by experimental characterizations. In this regard, a systematic methodology is presented for acquiring the anisotropy from the process related inner substructure (microscale) to the material response at the homogenized length scale (macroscale). We found out that the layer thickness and overlap ratio parameters significantly alter the microstructures and thereby, stiffness of the macroscale properties.
Published in: Applied Composite Materials, 10.1007/s10443-021-09940-9, Springer Nature