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Research Papers

Laser Forming of Metal Foam Sandwich Panels: Effect of Panel Manufacturing Method

[+] Author and Article Information
Tizian Bucher

Advanced Manufacturing Laboratory,
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Columbia University,
New York, NY 10027
e-mail: tb2430@columbia.edu

Min Zhang

Laser Processing Research Center,
School of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering,
Soochow University,
Suzhou, Jiangsu 215021, China
e-mail: mzhang@aliyun.com

Chang Jun Chen

Laser Processing Research Center,
School of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering,
Soochow University,
Suzhou, Jiangsu 215021, China
e-mail: chjchen2001@aliyun.com

Ravi Verma

Materials and Manufacturing Tech,
Boeing Research and Technology,
Berkeley, MO 63134
e-mail: ravi.verma2@boeing.com

Wayne Li

Boeing Company,
Philadelphia, PA 10027
e-mail: wayne.w.li@boeing.com

Y. Lawrence Yao

Fellow ASME
Advanced Manufacturing Laboratory,
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Columbia University,
New York, NY 10027
e-mail: yly1@columbia.edu

1Corresponding author.

Manuscript received October 31, 2018; final manuscript received February 26, 2019; published online March 28, 2019. Assoc. Editor: Hongqiang Chen.

J. Manuf. Sci. Eng 141(5), 051006 (Mar 28, 2019) (11 pages) Paper No: MANU-18-1764; doi: 10.1115/1.4043194 History: Received October 31, 2018; Accepted February 27, 2019

Sandwich panels with metal foam cores have a tremendous potential in various industrial applications due to their outstanding strength-to-weight ratio, stiffness, and shock absorption capacity. A recent study paved the road toward a more economical implementation of sandwich panels, by showing that the material can be successfully bent up to large angles using laser forming. The study also developed a fundamental understanding of the underlying bending mechanisms and established accurate numerical models. In this study, these efforts were carried further, and the impact of the foam core structure, the facesheet and foam core compositions, and the adhesion method on the bending efficiency and the bending limit was investigated. These factors were studied individually and collectively by comparing two fundamentally different sandwich panel types. Thermally induced stresses at the facesheet/core interface were thoroughly considered. Numerical modeling was carried out under different levels of geometric accuracy to complement bending experiments under a wide range of process conditions. Interactions between panel properties and process conditions were demonstrated and discussed.

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References

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Figures

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Fig. 4

(a) Equivalent sandwich model, (b) Kelvin-cell sandwich model, (c) type I sandwich panel specimen (left) and corresponding voxel model (right), and (d) type II sandwich panel specimen (left) and corresponding voxel model (right)

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Fig. 3

Typical EDS line scan of a type I sandwich panel specimen, showing the magnesium content. The scan was performed across the interface between the facesheet and the foam core. The interface is the intermediary region between the high Mg-content facesheet and the low Mg-content foam.

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Fig. 2

Schematic of two layers of thicknesses s1 and s2 that are joined by an interface of thickness η, with a close-up of the traction components at the interface [13]

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Fig. 1

(a) Type I sandwich panel and (b) type II sandwich panel

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Fig. 5

Bending angles of both sandwich panel types over 8 laser scans at a large spot size (D = 12 mm, v = 10 mm/s) and a small spot size (D = 4 mm, v = 30 mm/s), the power was constant at P = 800 W. The results were averaged over three specimens; standard errors are shown.

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Fig. 6

The bending limit of the (a) type I and (b) type II sandwich panel at a large spot size (D = 12 mm, v = 10 mm/s) were around 65 deg and around 45 deg, respectively. In the type I sandwich panel, the top facesheet mostly deformed inwards, whereas it mostly deformed outwards in the type II sandwich panel.

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Fig. 7

Bending angles of the “isolated” facesheets (not attached to foam core) at a small spot size (D = 4 mm, v = 30 mm/s). The type I facesheet, made of AW 5005, bent more efficiently than the type II facesheet, which was made of Al 1060.

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Fig. 8

Plastic strain distribution in the y-direction after a laser scan at (D = 12 mm, v = 10 mm/s). AW 5005 facesheet properties were used in (a), and Al 1060 facesheet properties were used in (b). The remaining geometrical and material properties were identical. The deformation was scaled by a factor of 10 for viewing clarity. Only half of the model is shown due to symmetry.

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Fig. 9

Foam pucks were sandwiched between two solid aluminum disks. A laser with spot size D = 12 mm was applied to the top surface of the assembly and the temperature was measured underneath. The measured heat diffusion through the type I and type II foams was very similar. The results were averaged over two specimens that were tested from both directions, standard deviations are shown.

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Fig. 17

Plastic strain distributions in the y-direction after a laser scan at a large spot size (D = 12 mm, v = 10 mm/s). In (a), the adhesion between the top facesheet and the foam core is intact, whereas in (b), the top facesheet is detached from the foam core over a half the spot size of D = 12 mm. Only half of the model is shown due to symmetry. The deformation was scaled by a factor of 10 for viewing clarity.

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Fig. 10

The moment of area of the type I foam is on average 18% greater than the moment of area of the type II foam, making it stiffer to bending deformation

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Fig. 11

Temperature history on the bottom surface of the sandwich panels during laser scans at a large spot size (D = 12 mm, v = 10 mm/s) and a small spot size (D = 4 mm, v = 30 mm/s). Four specimens were tested for each sandwich panel type, standard deviations are shown.

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Fig. 12

Temperature distribution in voxel models of (a) type I sandwich panels and (b) type II sandwich panels, during a scan at a large spot size (D = 12 mm, v = 10 mm/s). The laser was scanned in the x-direction. The models were sliced along the laser scan line for viewing clarity.

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Fig. 13

Cross sections of type I and type II sandwich panels that were bent to the bending limit. The laser was scanned into the page. At a small spot size (D = 4 mm, v = 30 mm/s), (a) the bending limit of the type I sandwich panel is around 15 deg and (b) for the type II sandwich panel it is around 12 deg (b). At a large spot size (D = 12 mm, v = 10 mm/s), the limit is (c) around 65 deg for the type I sandwich panel, and (d) around 45 deg for the type II sandwich panel.

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Fig. 14

Plastic strain distributions in the y-direction in a type II sandwich panel after a laser scan at a large spot size (D = 12 mm, v = 10 mm/s), shown using a voxel model. The deformation was scaled by a factor of 10 for viewing clarity. The laser was scanned into the page, and the laser center was on the dashed line.

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Fig. 15

Plastic strain distributions in the y-direction in a Kelvin-cell sandwich model after a laser scan at a large spot size (D = 12 mm, v = 10 mm/s). Only half of the model is shown due to symmetry. In (a), the foam core was constructed such that cavities are underneath the top facesheet at the symmetry plane, whereas in (b), mostly cell walls are underneath the top facesheet. The remaining properties of both models are identical. The deformation was scaled by a factor of 10 for viewing clarity.

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Fig. 16

(a) A cross section of the type II sandwich panel obtained using a micro-CT scan shows that there are regions of detachment between the facesheet and the foam core. This detachment is detrimental to laser forming since the maximum achievable bending angle drops from 45 deg to around 15 deg at a large spot size (D = 12 mm, v = 10 mm/s), shown in (b).

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