IN-SITU DEFECT DETECTION FOR LASER POWDER BED FUSION WITH ACTIVE LASER THERMOGRAPHY

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Date

2023

Authors

Breese, P.P.
Becker, T.
Oster, S.
Metz, C.
Altenburg, S.J.

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University of Texas at Austin

Abstract

Defects are still common in metal components built with Additive Manufacturing (AM). Process monitoring methods for laser powder bed fusion (PBF-LB/M) are used in industry, but relationships between monitoring data and defect formation are not fully understood yet. Additionally, defects and deformations may develop with a time delay to the laser energy input. Thus, currently, the component quality is only determinable after the finished process. Here, active laser thermography, a nondestructive testing method, is adapted to PBF-LB/M, using the defocused process laser as heat source. The testing can be performed layer by layer throughout the manufacturing process. We study our proposed testing method along experiments carried out on a custom research PBF-LB/M machine using infrared (IR) cameras. Our work enables a shift from post-process testing of components towards in-situ testing during the AM process. The actual component quality is evaluated in the process chamber and defects can be detected between layers.

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