First place at the NAFEMS award – Gian Hauenstein


My master thesis is about the characterization of a metallic powder material under different dynamic situations. The powder material is used in additive manufacturing processes for the production of metallic components. The additive manufacturing processes offer several advantages over conventional manufacturing processes. One advantage, which is also related to my master thesis, is the integration of functions, i.e. it is tried to integrate several functions or properties directly into the additive manufactured component. In my case, it is about a passive damping mechanism. It is precisely this integrated metallic powder material that then leads to a damping mechanism or energy loss in the system during the dynamic operation of the component.

Gian Hauenstein – Master of Engineering Industrial Technologies

In previous research on this topic, only experimental investigations were made. In my master thesis, I have modeled the dynamic behavior of the powder material with the discrete element method. The Discrete Element Method is a numerical calculation method for the simulation of particle movements and interactions. With the simulation, I was able to show different behavior and relationships between frequency, amplitude, cavity size, and cavity shapes. The major difficulty in my master thesis was the very small particle size (in the range of 10 to 60 micrometers), which leads directly to an immense computational effort, even with the latest computing power. This is also the main reason why no such investigation has been undertaken so far.

The results from the master thesis may lead to better product development in the field of additive manufactured components. A practical application is, for example, the turbine blade, which will sooner or later also be manufactured using an additive manufacturing process. Manufacturing the turbine blade with an additive manufacturing process not only has the advantage of weight optimization, but it is also possible to create such powder material inclusions, which lead to an integrated and passive damping mechanism. The turbine blade is a highly dynamically stressed component. With an integrated damping mechanism, longer service life can be achieved.

International Association Engineering Modelling


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