Experimental observation of stress formation during selective laser melting using in situ X-ray diffraction


Despite the ongoing success of metal additive manufacturing and especially the selective laser melting (SLM) technology, process-related defects, distortions and residual stresses impede its usability for fracture-critical applications. In this paper, results of in situ X-ray diffraction experiments are presented that offer insights into the strain and stress formation during the manufacturing of multi-layer thin walls made from Inconel 625. Using different measuring modes and laser scanning parameters, several experimental observations are discussed to validate and extend theoretical models and simulations from the literature. As a sample is built-up layer by layer, the stress state changes continuously up until the last exposure. The localized energy input leads to a complex stress field around the heat source that involves alternating tensile and compressive stresses. The correlation of temperature and yield strength results in a stress maximum at a certain distance to the top layer. The present study demonstrates the potential of high-energy synchrotron radiation diffraction for in situ SLM research.
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