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Netfabb Simulation capabilities

Predict the thermomechanical response of additive parts during the metal powder bed fusion and directed energy deposition manufacturing processes.

  • Metal powder bed fusion

    Use multiscale modelling to predict the thermal and mechanical response of parts and help reduce build failures. 

  • Directed energy deposition

    Simulate full builds for both powder-fed and wire-fed DED processes with Netfabb local simulation.

  • Fast, predictive simulation

    Adaptive meshing and the physics-based, multiscale approach help keep processing time low and accuracy high. (video: 1.07 mins)

  • Compensate for distortion

    Automatically compensate geometries based on simulation results to achieve the desired shape when printed.

  • Small scale simulation

    Generate PRM files based on chosen material and process parameters for increased accuracy.

  • Part scale simulation

    Simulate powder bed fusion additive manufacturing processes to identify potential causes of build failures.

  • Simulate the entire build plate

    Capture interactions between parts and the distortion of the build plate.

  • Simulate stress relief

    Design appropriate heating cycles for post-processing by inputting the temperature vs. time curve of the desired process.

  • Detect recoater interference

    Identify possible build failures with powder bed processes that may cause equipment damage.

  • Avoid support failure

    Predict support failure to aid in the design and placement of support structures.

  • Predict part distortion

    Predict how metal additive manufacturing parts will deform to help reduce build failures.

  • Account for part/powder interaction

    Model conduction of energy into the loose powder for increased model accuracy.

  • Calculate residual stresses

    Accurately calculate residual stresses and strains built up during the AM process to identify likely regions of failure.

  • Simulate response after wire-cutting

    Simulate the mechanical response of a deposited part after removal from the build plate to calculate the final distortion.

  • Predict hot spots and lack of fusion

    Apply multiscale modelling to predict regions of a build that get too hot or not hot enough (lack of fusion) during processing.

Simulation validation and research

Since 2012, more than US$7.3M has been spent validating the Netfabb Simulation solver predictions by comparing with experimental results for hundreds of design cases and geometries.

Part/powder interaction

America Makes, GE GRC and United Technologies Research Centre data shows improved accuracy with the explicit modelling of loose powder and the interaction between parts.

Support failure prediction

Netfabb Simulation correctly indicates the delamination of the part from the support on a component manufactured at the Penn State CIMP3D Additive Manufacturing centre.

Figure courtesy of Dr Ed Demeter

Moving source simulation

Validating moving-source model predictions show Netfabb Simulation is able to accurately calculate temperature and distortion measured during the powder bed fusion process. The final calculated distortion is within 5% error of the measurement.