Hybrid additive and subtractive manufacturing of large-scale and multi-material parts

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Date
2023-12
Authors
Weflen, Eric
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Peters, Frank E
Frank, Matthew C
Collins, Peter C
Dorneich, Michael C
Eisenmann, David J
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Industrial and Manufacturing Systems Engineering
Abstract
This research presents methods of improving manufacturing resilience and agility through the hybridization of multiple materials and multiple processes into a system. The increasing demand for product customization, expedited delivery times, and persistent supply chain disruptions highlight the importance of adopting versatile manufacturing systems for rapid production at the point of need. While traditional manufacturing consists of discrete, material-specific processes, automation and hybridization efforts are driving toward a convergence of processes and materials that allow for system adaptability to meet changing needs. However, the integration of traditionally incompatible or discrete processes and materials requires methods of interfacing them together which have not yet been developed. The presented work is the development of interfaces between the machine and the part, material regions within a part, additive and subtractive processes within a machine, and between the operator and the machine. An emphasis is placed on high deposition rate processes for polymers and metals, paired with machining for dimensional accuracy and surface finish. A novel approach to bonding and releasing polymer parts to the build plate of a large-scale additive manufacturing system has been developed. Similar mechanically interlocking features to those used on the build plate are deployed to create multi-material parts consisting of metal and polymer composite regions. A new method of integrating robotic machining and metal additive manufacturing using advanced sensing is established to rework, repair, or upgrade metalcastings. An approach to integrating the operator into a complex system of robotic hybrid manufacturing processes is presented. This research contributes to realizing hybridized manufacturing processes that can produce heterogeneous, multi-material parts to improve manufacturing flexibility and resilience.
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