Many new revolutionary concepts have emerged recently as viable pathways to invent next generation high performance structural components. With the emergence of additive manufacturing (AM) and its rapid advances for metals and alloys, practical realization of these concepts is imminent. However, the lack of microstructure-informed structural analysis and design tools is a critical gap in the field that the proposed research is intended to fill. Additive Manufacturing LLC, in collaboration with Clarkson University and U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL), proposes the development of a microstructure-informed multiscale structural analysis and design framework (MSADF) for the analysis, design, development, testing and validation of high performance structural components built using next generation revolutionary material systems and design concepts.
The MSADF is a software solution that integrates advanced computational and experimental methods to address various challenges arising from the uncertainties associated with the complex heterogeneous microstructure. In essence, it consists of a suite of advanced constitutive models, a multiscale platform such as NASA’s FEAMAC and experimental methods to extract material properties at microstructural length scale. In the proposed Phase II R&D, microstructure informed constitutive models for AM manufactured Ti-64, ME3, and high entropy alloys will be developed and experimentally validated. The performance of MSDAF as an advanced structural analysis tool will be evaluated by performing the analysis of two AM manufactured real life components: a ME3 engine disk and a NAVY bracket. Similarly, to evaluate MSDAF as a design tool, a microstructurally optimal design of the NAVY bracket will be determined. The original and re-designed brackets will be manufactured by choosing appropriate AM process parameters, and their predicted performances will be experimentally validated.
The development of metal and metallic alloys with excellent mechanical properties is extremely important for both the aerospace and aeronautical applications. For future aircraft with hybrid electric or all electric propulsion systems, advanced materials and manufacturing technology are critical for the design, development, and manufacturing of their structural components. The proposed innovation will serve as a vital design tool for its optimal design. It has the potential to make positive impact on all important NASA missions and programs.
The proposed microstructure-informed multiscale structural analysis and design framework will be a powerful tool in the field of additive manufacturing. It can be used as an accurate stress analysis to predict the structural performance of components, a reliable design tool for developing microstructurally optimal high performance components, and an R&D tool for advanced material systems.