Design for additive manufacturing : Downsizing of a mechanical system thanks to multi-functional optimization

Myriam Orquera (Sept. 2015)

 

Funding : part-time teaching service for Aggregation prof.

Supervision : Dominique MILLET and Sébastien CAMPOCASSO

 

The advent of new technologies in additive manufacturing — commonly known as 3D printing–, opens new perspectives that allow materials saving, improvement of mechanical solidity, In addition, material deposit — that is made layer after layer –, frees the operator from the design constraints resulting from traditional manufacturing processes (such as milling, moulding, …). Therefore it is possible to build complex shapes, interior cavities, etc.
In order to achieve such design developments that exploit all the benefits of this process while meeting the new constraints of additive manufacturing, new rules and methodologies are required. This is the reason why new design assistance tools are developed, named Design For Additive Manufacturing, DFAM. However most of the DFAM methods that are suggested in the literature up to now remain focused on one mechanical piece only. In addition, optimization processes are mainly limited to mass reduction or piece number reduction, and more rarely deal with the addition of new functions.
A novel approach is studied to achieve a multi-functional optimization of a whole kinematic structure. This will lead to a suited methodology for the downsizing of mechanisms in order, for example, to spend less energy, decrease occupied volume, decrease mass, while keeping an identical output power. Then, in order to quantify the improvements and their added value, a novel design indicator named «downsizing rate» will be defined.