Astronomy & Space Sciences

Title :

Towards realization of additive manufacturing of aerospace structural component in India

Area of research :

Astronomy & Space Sciences, Engineering Sciences

Focus area :


Principal Investigator :

Dr Arvind Kumar, Associate Professor, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur

Timeline Start Year :


Contact info :


Executive Summary :

The structural components in aerospace applications, when traditionally manufactured, result in excessive wastage of the material, energy and time and put limitations on design complexity and weight reduction. In this project, investigators are focusing upon extending the metal Additive Manufacturing (AM) process (Selective Laser Melting) to manufacture a critically complex aerospace structural component, i.e. the Bearing Sump Housing (see Fig. 1 in Attachment 1). AM processes are known for their potential to handle design complexity and integration while providing with superior mechanical properties. The aerospace structural parts are made of titanium (low temperature) and steel/nickel (high temperature). Their manufacturing by AM route faces challenges of residual stresses, distortion and mechanical property deterioration while incorporating thin sections. Each part if designed for Additive Manufacturing has a distinct challenge, therefore the AM process design plays a very important role to overcome these challenges. Further, post-build machining issues to improve surface finish are to be solved by developing alternative low-cost post-processing solutions (for example electro-polishing technique). This project will develop a robust platform for process design, development and optimization for AM of aerospace structural components by integrating design with process physics, structure and defects formation, based on a validated integrated numerical-experimental analysis. For an effective adaptation of aerospace parts to AM technology Design for Additive Manufacturing guidelines will be adopted. The analysis’ results will be used to make changes in machine parameters of the existing AM equipment. The end outcome will be ready to use process parameters, manufacturing practices and part-specific process design for low-cost additive manufacturing of steel and titanium aerospace structural part. Researchers from IIT Kanpur and GE have joined hands in this project. GE will contribute 15% in cash (INR 30 Lakhs) in the requested budget of 2Cr. The design/process developed in this project would enable a next phase effort targeted at the industrialization of manufacturing using AM technologies.

Total Budget (INR):


Achievements :

Open source platform OpenFOAM and LIGGHTS are currently extended, modified and coupled for Laser Powder Bed Fusion (LPBF) additive manufacturing process modelling and simulation. The process simulation will study the transport phenomena (convection, melting/ solidification phase change, shrinkage, remelting) in the LPBF process.

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Organizations involved