Large scale reactive additive manufacturing and what to expect when scaling up
March 8 – 12, 2020
Additive manufacturing as a whole offers tremendous savings in time and cost for rapid prototyping and tooling. At present there is a significant number of thermoplastic printers available from small-scale filament-based extrusion to large scale pellet-based extrusion. Thermosets have seen less growth and have been primarily limited to small scale research setups. Recently, a large-scale thermoset printer, the Reactive Additive Manufacturing (RAM) printer was developed (cf. Figure 1). This printer consists of an overall build volume of 450 ft3 and a gantry speed up to 50 in/s. The RAM system is also equipped with a modular pumping station capable of pumping feedstock material at pressures of 3000 psi in 5 or 55 gallon reservoirs. This work intends to reveal the challenges of working with a large scale Direct Ink Writing (DIW) process and how to overcome them. Two material chemistries have been scaled up for this system and are presented herein: a peroxide cured vinyl ester and latent cured epoxy-anhydrides. Factors such as pumpability, printability, and performance vary significantly between these systems and are discussed using rheological characterization, modeling, printing setup and parameters, and part design. Figure
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Christopher J. Hershey, John M. Lindahl, Vlastimil Kunc, Stian K. Romberg, and Brett G. Compton, "Large scale reactive additive manufacturing and what to expect when scaling up" in "Innovative Materials For Additive Manufacturing (IMAM)", Daniel Schmidt, Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology, Luxembourg Nikhil Gupta, New York University, USA Chua Chee Kai, NTU, Singapore Brett G. Compton, University of Tennessee, USA Eds, ECI Symposium Series, (2020). https://dc.engconfintl.org/imam/17