Effects of Thermal Cycling on Wire and Arc Additive Manufacturing of Al-5356 Components
Wire and arc additive manufacturing (WAAM) provides a promising alternative to conventional machining for the production of large structures with complex geometry, as well as individualized low quantity components, using cost-efficient production resources. Due to the layer-by-layer build-up approach, process conditions, such as energy input, deposition patterns and heat conduction during the additive manufacturing process result in a unique thermal history of the structure, affecting the build-up properties. This experimental study aims to describe the effects of thermal cycling on the geometrical and material properties of wire arc additive manufactured Al-5356 aluminum alloy. Under consideration, that Al-5356 is a non-heat treatable alloy, a significant effect on geometrical formation is expected. Linear wall samples were manufactured using pulsed cold metal transfer (CMT-P) under variation of wire-feed rate, travel speed and interpass temperatures. The samples were analyzed in terms of geometry; microstructural composition; hardness and residual stress. Furthermore, the mechanical properties were determined in different building directions.