Fatigue Analysis of 3D Printed 15-5 PH Stainless Steel - A Combined Numerical and Experimental Study

2019-10-16T17:26:56Z (GMT) by Anudeep Padmanabhan
Additive manufacturing (AM) or 3D printing has gained significant advancement in recent years. However the potential of 3D printed metals still has not been fully explored. A main reason is the lack of accurate knowledge of the load capacity of 3D printed metals, such as fatigue behavior under cyclic load conditions, which is still poorly understood as compared with the conventional wrought counterpart.

The goal of the thesis is to advance the knowledge of fatigue behavior of 15-5 PH stainless steel manufactured through laser powder bed fusion process. To achieve the goal, a combined numerical and experimental study is carried out. First, using a rotary fatigue testing experiment, the fatigue life of the 15-5 PH stainless steel is measured. The strain life curve shows that the numbers of the reversals to failure increase from 13,403 to 46,760 as the applied strain magnitudes decrease from 0.214\% from 0.132\%, respectively. The micro-structure analysis shows that predominantly brittle fracture is presented on the fractured surface. Second, a finite element model based on cyclic plasticity including the damage model is developed to predict the fatigue life. The model is calibrated with two cases: one is the fatigue life of 3D printed 17-4 stainless steel under constant amplitude strain load using the direct cyclic method, and the other one is the cyclic behavior of Alloy 617 under multi-amplitude strain loads using the static analysis method. Both validation models show a good correlation with the literature experimental data. Finally, after the validation, the finite element model is applied to the 15-5 PH stainless steel. Using the direct cyclic method, the model predicts the fatigue life of 15-5 PH stainless steel under constant amplitude strain. The extension of the prediction curve matches well with the previously measured experimental results, following the combined Coffin-Manson Basquin Law. Under multi-amplitude strain, the kinematic hardening evolution parameter is incorporated into the model. The model is capable to capture the stresses at varied strain amplitudes. Higher stresses are predicted when strain amplitudes are increased. The model presented in the work can be used to design reliable 3D printed metals under cyclic loading conditions.