The steel research team at CAVS is leveraging multi-scale modeling, testing and characterization capabilities to develop 3rd generation advanced high strength steels. These steels show a combination of strength and ductility higher than those of the 1st generation steels, but doesn't have the prohibitive cost associated with manufacturing 2nd generation steels, such as TWIP and fully austenitic stainless steels.
CAVS steel research team are closely working with steel making partners by using ICME methods to explore novel metallurgical effects at the lower scale. These can be exploited at the lab scale, and then lab-to-fab up-scaled to obtain innovative steel manufacturing methods that are cost-effective, reliable, and can be integrated in current steel plant infrastructures.
Since relationships between powder characteristics and processing parameters are not well understood, experiments are being undertaken to investigate the impact of powders and parameters on the final material properties. Current work focuses on an aerospace alloy commonly used in additive manufacturing, Ti-6Al-4V. One large parametric study sponsored by the Army Research Laboratory is currently in progress to compare different powder production methods, size distributions, morphologies, and reuse of powder. The study investigates effects of powder characteristics and process parameters on LENS-fabricated parts according to an L36 Taguchi design. After production of the test coupons, tensile properties and porosity will be evaluated to determine the effects of powder characteristics. The extensive database of information collected during this study will also feed into modeling efforts relating to additive manufacturing at CAVS.