Abstract

Nanoparticles are being used in Additive Manufacturing to improve on the minimum feature sizes that the processes are able to achieve. In order to accurately control this process, it is important to understand the underlying characteristics that define the sintering of nanoparticles. This is done by modelling the process. A nanoparticle simulation has been introduced to model the sintering between the nanoparticles in a powder bed. These simulations make use of Phase Field Modelling to track the diffusion between the particles in the system. However, the current state of the simulations only consider the sintering of single layers of powder beds subject to isothermal heating. For the simulation to be able to simulate an actual Additive Manufacturing process where a 3D part is built, the model has to consider the characteristics of multiple layers of nanoparticles in beds undergoing sintering. Additionally, during Additive Manufacturing processes like Selective Laser Sintering, where the bed is not undergoing an even temperature heating, a nanoparticle sintering simulation for this process must be able to account for these temperature changes. This paper presents advancements in simulating nanoparticle sintering to be able to model the sintering behavior between multiple layers of nanoparticles as well as the effects of a temperature gradient on the sintering of nanoparticles.

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