Politecnico di Torino, Politecnico di Milano, Università degli Studi di Firenze, Thales Alenia Space Italia S.p.A., Prima Additive S.R.L.
This project is based on additive manufacturing techniques for Repairing/Remanufacturing, as opposed to recycling or reuse. These methods now offer the best value-added, resource-efficient approach to end-of-life product recovery.
To repair a component, surface and shape defects may need to be eliminated using traditional subtractive techniques, and then material is added to the surface. Material characteristics are restored by following conditioning, such as heat treatment or surface hardening. To meet dimensional tolerances, surfaces are then finished.
Automation employing of Additive Manufacturing (AM) technologies helps improve repair.
Issues in normal remanufacturing approach are: difficulties or challenges encountered when manually repairing and restoring components. Drawbacks of traditional techniques in the repair and restoration process (i.e dependency on skilled workers and issues related to inconsistency in the output quality).
The project will be articulated in:
The main expected result is an increased useful life and reuse of components, even of great value and high cost.
Using DED Solutions for Repair and Life Extension vs traditional welding for repairing could give different advantages:
An analysis of energy consumption and the life cycle of Repair processes will be performed to assess the sustainability.
For what concerns expected results for the LMD wire activity:
For what concern expected results for the CS activity:
For what concerns expected results for the WAAM activity:
For what concerns the use of hybrid sources to improve the deposition process and characteristics:
Increasing the range of material for laser processes: by using different laser wavelengths it is possible to face the challenges with high reflective materials and also to increase the families of materials to be processed with AM.
For all the previous activities it will be developed a proper process chain for the repair of components based on the adoption of AM processes, reverse engineering, and conventional technologies (chip removal). In particular, for the design of repairing procedure (scanning, surface preparation by machining, material deposition, surface finishing), for the characterization of deposited features (surface topography, dimensional accuracy, static mechanical properties, residual stresses, porosities and internal defects), for the prediction of thermal impact on the substrate by FE simulation tools. The Pre repair will be done using Reverse Engineering of damaged part, comparing damaged and undamaged part and evaluating the damaged volume. The Repair phase of damaged volume will be specifically designed for the use of AM procedures, while the for the post- repair the machining tool paths will be automatically obtained for the repaired volume.
One of the valuable results will be the set up of repair for space infrastructure. The advantage is great for the recovery of any failures that could lead to the scrapping of parts with a huge waste of resources. This also affects the way the project is conceived, since to avoid possible failures, the spatial structures are often oversized. Also, in the future the same technology could be envisioned to be used directly in space to support missions based on the Moon.