Purpose: The body of the literature on the Arburg Plastic Freeforming process is still very limited despite the increasing industrial importance of this technology. This paper aims to contribute to a better understanding of this technology by investigating relations between characteristic process parameters and part features. Particularly, the effects of nominal dimension, drop aspect ratio, build chamber temperature and part position on accuracy are investigated. The density of manufactured parts is also measured to understand its relation with dimensional error. Design/methodology/approach: A benchmark part was designed and manufactured in Polycarbonate on an Arburg Plastic Freeformer 2K-3A. The process was repeated with two levels of drop aspect ratio (1.2125 and 1.2150) and two build chamber temperatures (90°C and 120°C). Each build job included five parts in different positions of the chamber. The dimensional accuracy of benchmarks was measured by using a digital caliper, while Archimede’s principle was used for density measurements. All the acquired results were processed through an analysis of variance to investigate the role of experimental factors. Findings: Results demonstrate that the linear shrinkage occurring at the end of the 3D printing process is the main source of inaccuracy. The higher the building chamber temperature, the most the part accuracy is influenced by the nominal dimension. The drop aspect ratio affects the dimensional error in the XY plane by increasing the overlap of adjacent droplets. On the other hand, this parameter does not influence the accuracy along the Z direction. The position of the parts inside the building chamber exhibited an influence on results, arguably due to the hot airflows. Research limitations/implications: This research did not allow for a complete understanding of the role of part positioning on part accuracy. Further study is needed to understand the detail of this phenomenon. Practical implications: The results of this study can aid the users of Arburg Plastic Freeforming technology by uncovering the role of the main process parameters. Originality/value: This paper expands the body of knowledge on the Arburg Plastic Freeforming process by providing new information on the role of the main process parameters on dimensional accuracy and density. Particularly, the results answer a research question on the role of the drop aspect ratio, demonstrating that its main effect is to vary the droplets overlap, which, in turn, affects the thermal shrinkage.

Effect of selected process parameters on dimensional accuracy in Arburg Plastic Freeforming

Mele M.;Pisaneschi G.;Campana G.;Zucchelli A.;Ciotti M.
2022

Abstract

Purpose: The body of the literature on the Arburg Plastic Freeforming process is still very limited despite the increasing industrial importance of this technology. This paper aims to contribute to a better understanding of this technology by investigating relations between characteristic process parameters and part features. Particularly, the effects of nominal dimension, drop aspect ratio, build chamber temperature and part position on accuracy are investigated. The density of manufactured parts is also measured to understand its relation with dimensional error. Design/methodology/approach: A benchmark part was designed and manufactured in Polycarbonate on an Arburg Plastic Freeformer 2K-3A. The process was repeated with two levels of drop aspect ratio (1.2125 and 1.2150) and two build chamber temperatures (90°C and 120°C). Each build job included five parts in different positions of the chamber. The dimensional accuracy of benchmarks was measured by using a digital caliper, while Archimede’s principle was used for density measurements. All the acquired results were processed through an analysis of variance to investigate the role of experimental factors. Findings: Results demonstrate that the linear shrinkage occurring at the end of the 3D printing process is the main source of inaccuracy. The higher the building chamber temperature, the most the part accuracy is influenced by the nominal dimension. The drop aspect ratio affects the dimensional error in the XY plane by increasing the overlap of adjacent droplets. On the other hand, this parameter does not influence the accuracy along the Z direction. The position of the parts inside the building chamber exhibited an influence on results, arguably due to the hot airflows. Research limitations/implications: This research did not allow for a complete understanding of the role of part positioning on part accuracy. Further study is needed to understand the detail of this phenomenon. Practical implications: The results of this study can aid the users of Arburg Plastic Freeforming technology by uncovering the role of the main process parameters. Originality/value: This paper expands the body of knowledge on the Arburg Plastic Freeforming process by providing new information on the role of the main process parameters on dimensional accuracy and density. Particularly, the results answer a research question on the role of the drop aspect ratio, demonstrating that its main effect is to vary the droplets overlap, which, in turn, affects the thermal shrinkage.
RAPID PROTOTYPING JOURNAL
Mele M.; Pisaneschi G.; Campana G.; Zucchelli A.; Ciotti M.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/883286
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