Jetting is one of the integral AM techniques for the manufacture of the multifunctional devices that are the core deliverable of the EPSRC Centre. In order to understand, develop and optimise the jetting process it is essential to develop models of the process that can accurately simulate the delivery, deposition and post-deposition behaviour of materials. This requires the development of a suite of multiphysics modelling tools.
The modelling techniques required can be divided into two parts. Firstly, those required to model the material deposition process itself, which involve computational fluid dynamics and fluid-solid interactions. Secondly, those required to model the post deposition behaviour of the manufactured devices, which involve multi-physics finite element analysis and multiscale mechanical modelling. This project is divided into two stages. The first involves an initial study, encompassing a state-of-the-art review, pilot studies and the identification of future research directions. In the second stage, PhD projects in the two parts introduced above will be used to develop the models and techniques required to model the deposition of materials via the jetting process and the post deposition behaviour of the manufactured parts.
This work underpins and informs work carried out at the EPSRC Centre in the areas of jetting of conductive and dielectric elements and the jetting of biodegradable materials. The development of the delivery and deposition process involves two main features: flow and chemical changes, requiring a description of each and a coupling where necessary. Options for simulation of these processes include the use of commercial multiphysics solvers such as Comsol, open source solvers such as MFIX or the development of an in house Lattice-Boltzmann or moving-particle semi-implicit scheme.
Project Team (Researchers)
Prof Ian Ashcroft, Prof Ricky Wildman, Dr Chris Tuck, Dr Xuesheng Chen, Dr Saeid Vafaei