Predicting solid-state phase transformations during metal additive manufacturing: A case study on electron-beam powder bed fusion of Inconel-738

Predicting solid-state phase transformations during metal additive manufacturing: A case study on electron-beam powder bed fusion of Inconel-738

금속 적층 제조 중 고체 상 변형 예측: Inconel-738의 전자빔 분말층 융합에 대한 사례 연구

Nana Kwabena Adomako a, Nima Haghdadi a, James F.L. Dingle bc, Ernst Kozeschnik d, Xiaozhou Liao bc, Simon P. Ringer bc, Sophie Primig a

Abstract

Metal additive manufacturing (AM) has now become the perhaps most desirable technique for producing complex shaped engineering parts. However, to truly take advantage of its capabilities, advanced control of AM microstructures and properties is required, and this is often enabled via modeling. The current work presents a computational modeling approach to studying the solid-state phase transformation kinetics and the microstructural evolution during AM. Our approach combines thermal and thermo-kinetic modelling. A semi-analytical heat transfer model is employed to simulate the thermal history throughout AM builds. Thermal profiles of individual layers are then used as input for the MatCalc thermo-kinetic software. The microstructural evolution (e.g., fractions, morphology, and composition of individual phases) for any region of interest throughout the build is predicted by MatCalc. The simulation is applied to an IN738 part produced by electron beam powder bed fusion to provide insights into how γ′ precipitates evolve during thermal cycling. Our simulations show qualitative agreement with our experimental results in predicting the size distribution of γ′ along the build height, its multimodal size character, as well as the volume fraction of MC carbides. Our findings indicate that our method is suitable for a range of AM processes and alloys, to predict and engineer their microstructures and properties.

Graphical Abstract

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Keywords

Additive manufacturing, Simulation, Thermal cycles, γ′ phase, IN738

1. Introduction

Additive manufacturing (AM) is an advanced manufacturing method that enables engineering parts with intricate shapes to be fabricated with high efficiency and minimal materials waste. AM involves building up 3D components layer-by-layer from feedstocks such as powder [1]. Various alloys, including steel, Ti, Al, and Ni-based superalloys, have been produced using different AM techniques. These techniques include directed energy deposition (DED), electron- and laser powder bed fusion (E-PBF and L-PBF), and have found applications in a variety of industries such as aerospace and power generation [2][3][4]. Despite the growing interest, certain challenges limit broader applications of AM fabricated components in these industries and others. One of such limitations is obtaining a suitable and reproducible microstructure that offers the desired mechanical properties consistently. In fact, the AM as-built microstructure is highly complex and considerably distinctive from its conventionally processed counterparts owing to the complicated thermal cycles arising from the deposition of several layers upon each other [5][6].

Several studies have reported that the solid-state phases and solidification microstructure of AM processed alloys such as CMSX-4, CoCr [7][8], Ti-6Al-4V [9][10][11]IN738 [6]304L stainless steel [12], and IN718 [13][14] exhibit considerable variations along the build direction. For instance, references [9][10] have reported that there is a variation in the distribution of α and β phases along the build direction in Ti-alloys. Similarly, the microstructure of an L-PBF fabricated martensitic steel exhibits variations in the fraction of martensite [15]. Furthermore, some of the present authors and others [6][16][17][18][19][20] have recently reviewed and reported that there is a difference in the morphology and fraction of nanoscale precipitates as a function of build height in Ni-based superalloys. These non-uniformities in the as-built microstructure result in an undesired heterogeneity in mechanical and other important properties such as corrosion and oxidation [19][21][22][23]. To obtain the desired microstructure and properties, additional processing treatments are utilized, but this incurs extra costs and may lead to precipitation of detrimental phases and grain coarsening. Therefore, a through-process understanding of the microstructure evolution under repeated heating and cooling is now needed to further advance 3D printed microstructure and property control.

It is now commonly understood that the microstructure evolution during printing is complex, and most AM studies concentrate on the microstructure and mechanical properties of the final build only. Post-printing studies of microstructure characteristics at room temperature miss crucial information on how they evolve. In-situ measurements and modelling approaches are required to better understand the complex microstructural evolution under repeated heating and cooling. Most in-situ measurements in AM focus on monitoring the microstructural changes, such as phase transformations and melt pool dynamics during fabrication using X-ray scattering and high-speed X-ray imaging [24][25][26][27]. For example, Zhao et al. [25] measured the rate of solidification and described the α/β phase transformation during L-PBF of Ti-6Al-4V in-situ. Also, Wahlmann et al. [21] recently used an L-PBF machine coupled with X-ray scattering to investigate the changes in CMSX-4 phase during successive melting processes. Although these techniques provide significant understanding of the basic principles of AM, they are not widely accessible. This is due to the great cost of the instrument, competitive application process, and complexities in terms of the experimental set-up, data collection, and analysis [26][28].

Computational modeling techniques are promising and more widely accessible tools that enable advanced understanding, prediction, and engineering of microstructures and properties during AM. So far, the majority of computational studies have concentrated on physics based process models for metal AM, with the goal of predicting the temperature profile, heat transfer, powder dynamics, and defect formation (e.g., porosity) [29][30]. In recent times, there have been efforts in modeling of the AM microstructure evolution using approaches such as phase-field [31], Monte Carlo (MC) [32], and cellular automata (CA) [33], coupled with finite element simulations for temperature profiles. However, these techniques are often restricted to simulating the evolution of solidification microstructures (e.g., grain and dendrite structure) and defects (e.g., porosity). For example, Zinovieva et al. [33] predicted the grain structure of L-PBF Ti-6Al-4V using finite difference and cellular automata methods. However, studies on the computational modelling of the solid-state phase transformations, which largely determine the resulting properties, remain limited. This can be attributed to the multi-component and multi-phase nature of most engineering alloys in AM, along with the complex transformation kinetics during thermal cycling. This kind of research involves predictions of the thermal cycle in AM builds, and connecting it to essential thermodynamic and kinetic data as inputs for the model. Based on the information provided, the thermokinetic model predicts the history of solid-state phase microstructure evolution during deposition as output. For example, a multi-phase, multi-component mean-field model has been developed to simulate the intermetallic precipitation kinetics in IN718 [34] and IN625 [35] during AM. Also, Basoalto et al. [36] employed a computational framework to examine the contrasting distributions of process-induced microvoids and precipitates in two Ni-based superalloys, namely IN718 and CM247LC. Furthermore, McNamara et al. [37] established a computational model based on the Johnson-Mehl-Avrami model for non-isothermal conditions to predict solid-state phase transformation kinetics in L-PBF IN718 and DED Ti-6Al-4V. These models successfully predicted the size and volume fraction of individual phases and captured the repeated nucleation and dissolution of precipitates that occur during AM.

In the current study, we propose a modeling approach with appreciably short computational time to investigate the detailed microstructural evolution during metal AM. This may include obtaining more detailed information on the morphologies of phases, such as size distribution, phase fraction, dissolution and nucleation kinetics, as well as chemistry during thermal cycling and final cooling to room temperature. We utilize the combination of the MatCalc thermo-kinetic simulator and a semi-analytical heat conduction model. MatCalc is a software suite for simulation of phase transformations, microstructure evolution and certain mechanical properties in engineering alloys. It has successfully been employed to simulate solid-state phase transformations in Ni-based superalloys [38][39], steels [40], and Al alloys [41] during complex thermo-mechanical processes. MatCalc uses the classical nucleation theory as well as the so-called Svoboda-Fischer-Fratzl-Kozeschnik (SFFK) growth model as the basis for simulating precipitation kinetics [42]. Although MatCalc was originally developed for conventional thermo-mechanical processes, we will show that it is also applicable for AM if the detailed time-temperature profile of the AM build is known. The semi-analytical heat transfer code developed by Stump and Plotkowski [43] is used to simulate these profile throughout the AM build.

1.1. Application to IN738

Inconel-738 (IN738) is a precipitation hardening Ni-based superalloy mainly employed in high-temperature components, e.g. in gas turbines and aero-engines owing to its exceptional mechanical properties at temperatures up to 980 °C, coupled with high resistance to oxidation and corrosion [44]. Its superior high-temperature strength (∼1090 MPa tensile strength) is provided by the L12 ordered Ni3(Al,Ti) γ′ phase that precipitates in a face-centered cubic (FCC) γ matrix [45][46]. Despite offering great properties, IN738, like most superalloys with high γ′ fractions, is challenging to process owing to its propensity to hot cracking [47][48]. Further, machining of such alloys is challenging because of their high strength and work-hardening rates. It is therefore difficult to fabricate complex INC738 parts using traditional manufacturing techniques like casting, welding, and forging.

The emergence of AM has now made it possible to fabricate such parts from IN738 and other superalloys. Some of the current authors’ recent research successfully applied E-PBF to fabricate defect-free IN738 containing γ′ throughout the build [16][17]. The precipitated γ′ were heterogeneously distributed. In particular, Haghdadi et al. [16] studied the origin of the multimodal size distribution of γ′, while Lim et al. [17] investigated the gradient in γ′ character with build height and its correlation to mechanical properties. Based on these results, the present study aims to extend the understanding of the complex and site-specific microstructural evolution in E-PBF IN738 by using a computational modelling approach. New experimental evidence (e.g., micrographs not published previously) is presented here to support the computational results.

2. Materials and Methods

2.1. Materials preparation

IN738 Ni-based superalloy (59.61Ni-8.48Co-7.00Al-17.47Cr-3.96Ti-1.01Mo-0.81W-0.56Ta-0.49Nb-0.47C-0.09Zr-0.05B, at%) gas-atomized powder was used as feedstock. The powders, with average size of 60 ± 7 µm, were manufactured by Praxair and distributed by Astro Alloys Inc. An Arcam Q10 machine by GE Additive with an acceleration voltage of 60 kV was used to fabricate a 15 × 15 × 25 mm3 block (XYZ, Z: build direction) on a 316 stainless steel substrate. The block was 3D-printed using a ‘random’ spot melt pattern. The random spot melt pattern involves randomly selecting points in any given layer, with an equal chance of each point being melted. Each spot melt experienced a dwell time of 0.3 ms, and the layer thickness was 50 µm. Some of the current authors have previously characterized the microstructure of the very same and similar builds in more detail [16][17]. A preheat temperature of ∼1000 °C was set and kept during printing to reduce temperature gradients and, in turn, thermal stresses [49][50][51]. Following printing, the build was separated from the substrate through electrical discharge machining. It should be noted that this sample was simultaneously printed with the one used in [17] during the same build process and on the same build plate, under identical conditions.

2.2. Microstructural characterization

The printed sample was longitudinally cut in the direction of the build using a Struers Accutom-50, ground, and then polished to 0.25 µm suspension via standard techniques. The polished x-z surface was electropolished and etched using Struers A2 solution (perchloric acid in ethanol). Specimens for image analysis were polished using a 0.06 µm colloidal silica. Microstructure analyses were carried out across the height of the build using optical microscopy (OM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) with focus on the microstructure evolution (γ′ precipitates) in individual layers. The position of each layer being analyzed was determined by multiplying the layer number by the layer thickness (50 µm). It should be noted that the position of the first layer starts where the thermal profile is tracked (in this case, 2 mm from the bottom). SEM images were acquired using a JEOL 7001 field emission microscope. The brightness and contrast settings, acceleration voltage of 15 kV, working distance of 10 mm, and other SEM imaging parameters were all held constant for analysis of the entire build. The ImageJ software was used for automated image analysis to determine the phase fraction and size of γ′ precipitates and carbides. A 2-pixel radius Gaussian blur, following a greyscale thresholding and watershed segmentation was used [52]. Primary γ′ sizes (>50 nm), were measured using equivalent spherical diameters. The phase fractions were considered equal to the measured area fraction. Secondary γ′ particles (<50 nm) were not considered here. The γ′ size in the following refers to the diameter of a precipitate.

2.3. Hardness testing

A Struers DuraScan tester was utilized for Vickers hardness mapping on a polished x-z surface, from top to bottom under a maximum load of 100 mN and 10 s dwell time. 30 micro-indentations were performed per row. According to the ASTM standard [53], the indentations were sufficiently distant (∼500 µm) to assure that strain-hardened areas did not interfere with one another.

2.4. Computational simulation of E-PBF IN738 build

2.4.1. Thermal profile modeling

The thermal history was generated using the semi-analytical heat transfer code (also known as the 3DThesis code) developed by Stump and Plotkowski [43]. This code is an open-source C++ program which provides a way to quickly simulate the conductive heat transfer found in welding and AM. The key use case for the code is the simulation of larger domains than is practicable with Computational Fluid Dynamics/Finite Element Analysis programs like FLOW-3D AM. Although simulating conductive heat transfer will not be an appropriate simplification for some investigations (for example the modelling of keyholding or pore formation), the 3DThesis code does provide fast estimates of temperature, thermal gradient, and solidification rate which can be useful for elucidating microstructure formation across entire layers of an AM build. The mathematics involved in the code is as follows:

In transient thermal conduction during welding and AM, with uniform and constant thermophysical properties and without considering fluid convection and latent heat effects, energy conservation can be expressed as:(1)��∂�∂�=�∇2�+�̇where � is density, � specific heat, � temperature, � time, � thermal conductivity, and �̇ a volumetric heat source. By assuming a semi-infinite domain, Eq. 1 can be analytically solved. The solution for temperature at a given time (t) using a volumetric Gaussian heat source is presented as:(2)��,�,�,�−�0=33�����32∫0�1������exp−3�′�′2��+�′�′2��+�′�′2����′(3)and��=12��−�′+��2for�=�,�,�(4)and�′�′=�−���′Where � is the vector �,�,� and �� is the location of the heat source.

The numerical integration scheme used is an adaptive Gaussian quadrature method based on the following nondimensionalization:(5)�=��xy2�,�′=��xy2�′,�=��xy,�=��xy,�=��xy,�=���xy

A more detailed explanation of the mathematics can be found in reference [43].

The main source of the thermal cycling present within a powder-bed fusion process is the fusion of subsequent layers. Therefore, regions near the top of a build are expected to undergo fewer thermal cycles than those closer to the bottom. For this purpose, data from the single scan’s thermal influence on multiple layers was spliced to represent the thermal cycles experienced at a single location caused by multiple subsequent layers being fused.

The cross-sectional area simulated by this model was kept constant at 1 × 1 mm2, and the depth was dependent on the build location modelled with MatCalc. For a build location 2 mm from the bottom, the maximum number of layers to simulate is 460. Fig. 1a shows a stitched overview OM image of the entire build indicating the region where this thermal cycle is simulated and tracked. To increase similarity with the conditions of the physical build, each thermal history was constructed from the results of two simulations generated with different versions of a random scan path. The parameters used for these thermal simulations can be found in Table 1. It should be noted that the main purpose of the thermal profile modelling was to demonstrate how the conditions at different locations of the build change relative to each other. Accurately predicting the absolute temperature during the build would require validation via a temperature sensor measurement during the build process which is beyond the scope of the study. Nonetheless, to establish the viability of the heat source as a suitable approximation for this study, an additional sensitivity analysis was conducted. This analysis focused on the influence of energy input on γ′ precipitation behavior, the central aim of this paper. This was achieved by employing varying beam absorption energies (0.76, 0.82 – the values utilized in the simulation, and 0.9). The direct impact of beam absorption efficiency on energy input into the material was investigated. Specifically, the initial 20 layers of the build were simulated and subsequently compared to experimental data derived from SEM. While phase fractions were found to be consistent across all conditions, disparities emerged in the mean size of γ′ precipitates. An absorption efficiency of 0.76 yielded a mean size of approximately 70 nm. Conversely, absorption efficiencies of 0.82 and 0.9 exhibited remarkably similar mean sizes of around 130 nm, aligning closely with the outcomes of the experiments.

Fig. 1

Table 1. A list of parameters used in thermal simulation of E-PBF.

ParameterValue
Spatial resolution5 µm
Time step0.5 s
Beam diameter200 µm
Beam penetration depth1 µm
Beam power1200 W
Beam absorption efficiency0.82
Thermal conductivity25.37 W/(m⋅K)
Chamber temperature1000 °C
Specific heat711.756 J/(kg⋅K)
Density8110 kg/m3

2.4.2. Thermo-kinetic simulation

The numerical analyses of the evolution of precipitates was performed using MatCalc version 6.04 (rel 0.011). The thermodynamic (‘mc_ni.tdb’, version 2.034) and diffusion (‘mc_ni.ddb’, version 2.007) databases were used. MatCalc’s basic principles are elaborated as follows:

The nucleation kinetics of precipitates are computed using a computational technique based on a classical nucleation theory [54] that has been modified for systems with multiple components [42][55]. Accordingly, the transient nucleation rate (�), which expresses the rate at which nuclei are formed per unit volume and time, is calculated as:(6)�=�0��*∙�xp−�*�∙�∙exp−��where �0 denotes the number of active nucleation sites, �* the rate of atomic attachment, � the Boltzmann constant, � the temperature, �* the critical energy for nucleus formation, τ the incubation time, and t the time. � (Zeldovich factor) takes into consideration that thermal excitation destabilizes the nucleus as opposed to its inactive state [54]. Z is defined as follows:(7)�=−12�kT∂2∆�∂�2�*12where ∆� is the overall change in free energy due to the formation of a nucleus and n is the nucleus’ number of atoms. ∆�’s derivative is evaluated at n* (critical nucleus size). �* accounts for the long-range diffusion of atoms required for nucleation, provided that the matrix’ and precipitates’ composition differ. Svoboda et al. [42] developed an appropriate multi-component equation for �*, which is given by:(8)�*=4��*2�4�∑�=1��ki−�0�2�0��0�−1where �* denotes the critical radius for nucleation, � represents atomic distance, and � is the molar volume. �ki and �0� represent the concentration of elements in the precipitate and matrix, respectively. The parameter �0� denotes the rate of diffusion of the ith element within the matrix. The expression for the incubation time � is expressed as [54]:(9)�=12�*�2

and �*, which represents the critical energy for nucleation:(10)�*=16�3�3∆�vol2where � is the interfacial energy, and ∆Gvol the change in the volume free energy. The critical nucleus’ composition is similar to the γ′ phase’s equilibrium composition at the same temperature. � is computed based on the precipitate and matrix compositions, using a generalized nearest neighbor broken bond model, with the assumption of interfaces being planar, sharp, and coherent [56][57][58].

In Eq. 7, it is worth noting that �* represents the fundamental variable in the nucleation theory. It contains �3/∆�vol2 and is in the exponent of the nucleation rate. Therefore, even small variations in γ and/or ∆�vol can result in notable changes in �, especially if �* is in the order of �∙�. This is demonstrated in [38] for UDIMET 720 Li during continuous cooling, where these quantities change steadily during precipitation due to their dependence on matrix’ and precipitate’s temperature and composition. In the current work, these changes will be even more significant as the system is exposed to multiple cycles of rapid cooling and heating.

Once nucleated, the growth of a precipitate is assessed using the radius and composition evolution equations developed by Svoboda et al. [42] with a mean-field method that employs the thermodynamic extremal principle. The expression for the total Gibbs free energy of a thermodynamic system G, which consists of n components and m precipitates, is given as follows:(11)�=∑���0��0�+∑�=1�4���33��+∑�=1��ki�ki+∑�=1�4���2��.

The chemical potential of component � in the matrix is denoted as �0�(�=1,…,�), while the chemical potential of component � in the precipitate is represented by �ki(�=1,…,�,�=1,…,�). These chemical potentials are defined as functions of the concentrations �ki(�=1,…,�,�=1,…,�). The interface energy density is denoted as �, and �� incorporates the effects of elastic energy and plastic work resulting from the volume change of each precipitate.

Eq. (12) establishes that the total free energy of the system in its current state relies on the independent state variables: the sizes (radii) of the precipitates �� and the concentrations of each component �ki. The remaining variables can be determined by applying the law of mass conservation to each component �. This can be represented by the equation:(12)��=�0�+∑�=1�4���33�ki,

Furthermore, the global mass conservation can be expressed by equation:(13)�=∑�=1���When a thermodynamic system transitions to a more stable state, the energy difference between the initial and final stages is dissipated. This model considers three distinct forms of dissipation effects [42]. These include dissipations caused by the movement of interfaces, diffusion within the precipitate and diffusion within the matrix.

Consequently, �̇� (growth rate) and �̇ki (chemical composition’s rate of change) of the precipitate with index � are derived from the linear system of equation system:(14)�ij��=��where �� symbolizes the rates �̇� and �̇ki [42]. Index i contains variables for precipitate radius, chemical composition, and stoichiometric boundary conditions suggested by the precipitate’s crystal structure. Eq. (10) is computed separately for every precipitate �. For a more detailed description of the formulae for the coefficients �ij and �� employed in this work please refer to [59].

The MatCalc software was used to perform the numerical time integration of �̇� and �̇ki of precipitates based on the classical numerical method by Kampmann and Wagner [60]. Detailed information on this method can be found in [61]. Using this computational method, calculations for E-PBF thermal cycles (cyclic heating and cooling) were computed and compared to experimental data. The simulation took approximately 2–4 hrs to complete on a standard laptop.

3. Results

3.1. Microstructure

Fig. 1 displays a stitched overview image and selected SEM micrographs of various γ′ morphologies and carbides after observations of the X-Z surface of the build from the top to 2 mm above the bottom. Fig. 2 depicts a graph that charts the average size and phase fraction of the primary γ′, as it changes with distance from the top to the bottom of the build. The SEM micrographs show widespread primary γ′ precipitation throughout the entire build, with the size increasing in the top to bottom direction. Particularly, at the topmost height, representing the 460th layer (Z = 22.95 mm), as seen in Fig. 1b, the average size of γ′ is 110 ± 4 nm, exhibiting spherical shapes. This is representative of the microstructure after it solidifies and cools to room temperature, without experiencing additional thermal cycles. The γ′ size slightly increases to 147 ± 6 nm below this layer and remains constant until 0.4 mm (∼453rd layer) from the top. At this position, the microstructure still closely resembles that of the 460th layer. After the 453rd layer, the γ′ size grows rapidly to ∼503 ± 19 nm until reaching the 437th layer (1.2 mm from top). The γ′ particles here have a cuboidal shape, and a small fraction is coarser than 600 nm. γ′ continue to grow steadily from this position to the bottom (23 mm from the top). A small fraction of γ′ is > 800 nm.

Fig. 2

Besides primary γ′, secondary γ′ with sizes ranging from 5 to 50 nm were also found. These secondary γ′ precipitates, as seen in Fig. 1f, were present only in the bottom and middle regions. A detailed analysis of the multimodal size distribution of γ′ can be found in [16]. There is no significant variation in the phase fraction of the γ′ along the build. The phase fraction is ∼ 52%, as displayed in Fig. 2. It is worth mentioning that the total phase fraction of γ′ was estimated based on the primary γ′ phase fraction because of the small size of secondary γ′. Spherical MC carbides with sizes ranging from 50 to 400 nm and a phase fraction of 0.8% were also observed throughout the build. The carbides are the light grey precipitates in Fig. 1g. The light grey shade of carbides in the SEM images is due to their composition and crystal structure [52]. These carbides are not visible in Fig. 1b-e because they were dissolved during electro-etching carried out after electropolishing. In Fig. 1g, however, the sample was examined directly after electropolishing, without electro-etching.

Table 2 shows the nominal and measured composition of γ′ precipitates throughout the build by atom probe microscopy as determined in our previous study [17]. No build height-dependent composition difference was observed in either of the γ′ precipitate populations. However, there was a slight disparity between the composition of primary and secondary γ′. Among the main γ′ forming elements, the primary γ′ has a high Ti concentration while secondary γ′ has a high Al concentration. A detailed description of the atom distribution maps and the proxigrams of the constituent elements of γ′ throughout the build can be found in [17].

Table 2. Bulk IN738 composition determined using inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectroscopy (ICP-AES). Compositions of γ, primary γ′, and secondary γ′ at various locations in the build measured by APT. This information is reproduced from data in Ref. [17] with permission.

at%NiCrCoAlMoWTiNbCBZrTaOthers
Bulk59.1217.478.487.001.010.813.960.490.470.050.090.560.46
γ matrix
Top50.4832.9111.591.941.390.820.440.80.030.030.020.24
Mid50.3732.6111.931.791.540.890.440.10.030.020.020.010.23
Bot48.1034.5712.082.141.430.880.480.080.040.030.010.12
Primary γ′
Top72.172.513.4412.710.250.397.780.560.030.020.050.08
Mid71.602.573.2813.550.420.687.040.730.010.030.040.04
Bot72.342.473.8612.500.260.447.460.500.050.020.020.030.04
Secondary γ′
Mid70.424.203.2314.190.631.035.340.790.030.040.040.05
Bot69.914.063.6814.320.811.045.220.650.050.100.020.11

3.2. Hardness

Fig. 3a shows the Vickers hardness mapping performed along the entire X-Z surface, while Fig. 3b shows the plot of average hardness at different build heights. This hardness distribution is consistent with the γ′ precipitate size gradient across the build direction in Fig. 1Fig. 2. The maximum hardness of ∼530 HV1 is found at ∼0.5 mm away from the top surface (Z = 22.5), where γ′ particles exhibit the smallest observed size in Fig. 2b. Further down the build (∼ 2 mm from the top), the hardness drops to the 440–490 HV1 range. This represents the region where γ′ begins to coarsen. The hardness drops further to 380–430 HV1 at the bottom of the build.

Fig. 3

3.3. Modeling of the microstructural evolution during E-PBF

3.3.1. Thermal profile modeling

Fig. 4 shows the simulated thermal profile of the E-PBF build at a location of 23 mm from the top of the build, using a semi-analytical heat conduction model. This profile consists of the time taken to deposit 460 layers until final cooling, as shown in Fig. 4a. Fig. 4b-d show the magnified regions of Fig. 4a and reveal the first 20 layers from the top, a single layer (first layer from the top), and the time taken for the build to cool after the last layer deposition, respectively.

Fig. 4

The peak temperatures experienced by previous layers decrease progressively as the number of layers increases but never fall below the build preheat temperature (1000 °C). Our simulated thermal cycle may not completely capture the complexity of the actual thermal cycle utilized in the E-PBF build. For instance, the top layer (Fig. 4c), also representing the first deposit’s thermal profile without additional cycles (from powder heating, melting, to solidification), recorded the highest peak temperature of 1390 °C. Although this temperature is above the melting range of the alloy (1230–1360 °C) [62], we believe a much higher temperature was produced by the electron beam to melt the powder. Nevertheless, the solidification temperature and dynamics are outside the scope of this study as our focus is on the solid-state phase transformations during deposition. It takes ∼25 s for each layer to be deposited and cooled to the build temperature. The interlayer dwell time is 125 s. The time taken for the build to cool to room temperature (RT) after final layer deposition is ∼4.7 hrs (17,000 s).

3.3.2. MatCalc simulation

During the MatCalc simulation, the matrix phase is defined as γ. γ′, and MC carbide are included as possible precipitates. The domain of these precipitates is set to be the matrix (γ), and nucleation is assumed to be homogenous. In homogeneous nucleation, all atoms of the unit volume are assumed to be potential nucleation sitesTable 3 shows the computational parameters used in the simulation. All other parameters were set at default values as recommended in the version 6.04.0011 of MatCalc. The values for the interfacial energies are automatically calculated according to the generalized nearest neighbor broken bond model and is one of the most outstanding features in MatCalc [56][57][58]. It should be noted that the elastic misfit strain was not included in the calculation. The output of MatCalc includes phase fraction, size, nucleation rate, and composition of the precipitates. The phase fraction in MatCalc is the volume fraction. Although the experimental phase fraction is the measured area fraction, it is relatively similar to the volume fraction. This is because of the generally larger precipitate size and similar morphology at the various locations along the build [63]. A reliable phase fraction comparison between experiment and simulation can therefore be made.

Table 3. Computational parameters used in the simulation.

Precipitation domainγ
Nucleation site γ′Bulk (homogenous)
Nucleation site MC carbideBulk (Homogenous)
Precipitates class size250
Regular solution critical temperature γ′2500 K[64]
Calculated interfacial energyγ′ = 0.080–0.140 J/m2 and MC carbide = 0.410–0.430 J/m2
3.3.2.1. Precipitate phase fraction

Fig. 5a shows the simulated phase fraction of γ′ and MC carbide during thermal cycling. Fig. 5b is a magnified view of 5a showing the simulated phase fraction at the center points of the top 70 layers, whereas Fig. 5c corresponds to the first two layers from the top. As mentioned earlier, the top layer (460th layer) represents the microstructure after solidification. The microstructure of the layers below is determined by the number of thermal cycles, which increases with distance to the top. For example, layers 459, 458, 457, up to layer 1 (region of interest) experience 1, 2, 3 and 459 thermal cycles, respectively. In the top layer in Fig. 5c, the volume fraction of γ′ and carbides increases with temperature. For γ′, it decreases to zero when the temperature is above the solvus temperature after a few seconds. Carbides, however, remain constant in their volume fraction reaching equilibrium (phase fraction ∼ 0.9%) in a short time. The topmost layer can be compared to the first deposit, and the peak in temperature symbolizes the stage where the electron beam heats the powder until melting. This means γ′ and carbide precipitation might have started in the powder particles during heating from the build temperature and electron beam until the onset of melting, where γ′ dissolves, but carbides remain stable [28].

Fig. 5

During cooling after deposition, γ′ reprecipitates at a temperature of 1085 °C, which is below its solvus temperature. As cooling progresses, the phase fraction increases steadily to ∼27% and remains constant at 1000 °C (elevated build temperature). The calculated equilibrium fraction of phases by MatCalc is used to show the complex precipitation characteristics in this alloy. Fig. 6 shows that MC carbides form during solidification at 1320 °C, followed by γ′, which precipitate when the solidified layer cools to 1140 °C. This indicates that all deposited layers might contain a negligible amount of these precipitates before subsequent layer deposition, while being at the 1000 °C build temperature or during cooling to RT. The phase diagram also shows that the equilibrium fraction of the γ′ increases as temperature decreases. For instance, at 1000, 900, and 800 °C, the phase fractions are ∼30%, 38%, and 42%, respectively.

Fig. 6

Deposition of subsequent layers causes previous layers to undergo phase transformations as they are exposed to several thermal cycles with different peak temperatures. In Fig. 5c, as the subsequent layer is being deposited, γ′ in the previous layer (459th layer) begins to dissolve as the temperature crosses the solvus temperature. This is witnessed by the reduction of the γ′ phase fraction. This graph also shows how this phase dissolves during heating. However, the phase fraction of MC carbide remains stable at high temperatures and no dissolution is seen during thermal cycling. Upon cooling, the γ′ that was dissolved during heating reprecipitates with a surge in the phase fraction until 1000 °C, after which it remains constant. This microstructure is similar to the solidification microstructure (layer 460), with a similar γ′ phase fraction (∼27%).

The complete dissolution and reprecipitation of γ′ continue for several cycles until the 50th layer from the top (layer 411), where the phase fraction does not reach zero during heating to the peak temperature (see Fig. 5d). This indicates the ‘partial’ dissolution of γ′, which continues progressively with additional layers. It should be noted that the peak temperatures for layers that underwent complete dissolution were much higher (1170–1300 °C) than the γ′ solvus.

The dissolution and reprecipitation of γ′ during thermal cycling are further confirmed in Fig. 7, which summarizes the nucleation rate, phase fraction, and concentration of major elements that form γ′ in the matrix. Fig. 7b magnifies a single layer (3rd layer from top) within the full dissolution region in Fig. 7a to help identify the nucleation and growth mechanisms. From Fig. 7b, γ′ nucleation begins during cooling whereby the nucleation rate increases to reach a maximum value of approximately 1 × 1020 m−3s−1. This fast kinetics implies that some rearrangement of atoms is required for γ′ precipitates to form in the matrix [65][66]. The matrix at this stage is in a non-equilibrium condition. Its composition is similar to the nominal composition and remains unchanged. The phase fraction remains insignificant at this stage although nucleation has started. The nucleation rate starts declining upon reaching the peak value. Simultaneously, diffusion-controlled growth of existing nuclei occurs, depleting the matrix of γ′ forming elements (Al and Ti). Thus, from (7)(11), ∆�vol continuously decreases until nucleation ceases. The growth of nuclei is witnessed by the increase in phase fraction until a constant level is reached at 27% upon cooling to and holding at build temperature. This nucleation event is repeated several times.

Fig. 7

At the onset of partial dissolution, the nucleation rate jumps to 1 × 1021 m−3s−1, and then reduces sharply at the middle stage of partial dissolution. The nucleation rate reaches 0 at a later stage. Supplementary Fig. S1 shows a magnified view of the nucleation rate, phase fraction, and thermal profile, underpinning this trend. The jump in nucleation rate at the onset is followed by a progressive reduction in the solute content of the matrix. The peak temperatures (∼1130–1160 °C) are lower than those in complete dissolution regions but still above or close to the γ′ solvus. The maximum phase fraction (∼27%) is similar to that of the complete dissolution regions. At the middle stage, the reduction in nucleation rate is accompanied by a sharp drop in the matrix composition. The γ′ fraction drops to ∼24%, where the peak temperatures of the layers are just below or at γ′ solvus. The phase fraction then increases progressively through the later stage of partial dissolution to ∼30% towards the end of thermal cycling. The matrix solute content continues to drop although no nucleation event is seen. The peak temperatures are then far below the γ′ solvus. It should be noted that the matrix concentration after complete dissolution remains constant. Upon cooling to RT after final layer deposition, the nucleation rate increases again, indicating new nucleation events. The phase fraction reaches ∼40%, with a further depletion of the matrix in major γ′ forming elements.

3.3.2.2. γ′ size distribution

Fig. 8 shows histograms of the γ′ precipitate size distributions (PSD) along the build height during deposition. These PSDs are predicted at the end of each layer of interest just before final cooling to room temperature, to separate the role of thermal cycles from final cooling on the evolution of γ′. The PSD for the top layer (layer 460) is shown in Fig. 8a (last solidified region with solidification microstructure). The γ′ size ranges from 120 to 230 nm and is similar to the 44 layers below (2.2 mm from the top).

Fig. 8

Further down the build, γ′ begins to coarsen after layer 417 (44th layer from top). Fig. 8c shows the PSD after the 44th layer, where the γ′ size exhibits two peaks at ∼120–230 and ∼300 nm, with most of the population being in the former range. This is the onset of partial dissolution where simultaneously with the reprecipitation and growth of fresh γ′, the undissolved γ′ grows rapidly through diffusive transport of atoms to the precipitates. This is shown in Fig. 8c, where the precipitate class sizes between 250 and 350 represent the growth of undissolved γ′. Although this continues in the 416th layer, the phase fractions plot indicates that the onset of partial dissolution begins after the 411th layer. This implies that partial dissolution started early, but the fraction of undissolved γ′ was too low to impact the phase fraction. The reprecipitated γ′ are mostly in the 100–220 nm class range and similar to those observed during full dissolution.

As the number of layers increases, coarsening intensifies with continued growth of more undissolved γ′, and reprecipitation and growth of partially dissolved ones. Fig. 8d, e, and f show this sequence. Further down the build, coarsening progresses rapidly, as shown in Figs. 8d, 8e, and 8f. The γ′ size ranges from 120 to 1100 nm, with the peaks at 160, 180, and 220 nm in Figs. 8d, 8e, and 8f, respectively. Coarsening continues until nucleation ends during dissolution, where only the already formed γ′ precipitates continue to grow during further thermal cycling. The γ′ size at this point is much larger, as observed in layers 361 and 261, and continues to increase steadily towards the bottom (layer 1). Two populations in the ranges of ∼380–700 and ∼750–1100 nm, respectively, can be seen. The steady growth of γ′ towards the bottom is confirmed by the gradual decrease in the concentration of solute elements in the matrix (Fig. 7a). It should be noted that for each layer, the γ′ class with the largest size originates from continuous growth of the earliest set of the undissolved precipitates.

Fig. 9Fig. 10 and supplementary Figs. S2 and S3 show the γ′ size evolution during heating and cooling of a single layer in the full dissolution region, and early, middle stages, and later stages of partial dissolution, respectively. In all, the size of γ′ reduces during layer heating. Depending on the peak temperature of the layer which varies with build height, γ′ are either fully or partially dissolved as mentioned earlier. Upon cooling, the dissolved γ′ reprecipitate.

Fig. 9
Fig. 10

In Fig. 9, those layers that underwent complete dissolution (top layers) were held above γ′ solvus temperature for longer. In Fig. 10, layers at the early stage of partial dissolution spend less time in the γ′ solvus temperature region during heating, leading to incomplete dissolution. In such conditions, smaller precipitates are fully dissolved while larger ones shrink [67]. Layers in the middle stages of partial dissolution have peak temperatures just below or at γ′ solvus, not sufficient to achieve significant γ′ dissolution. As seen in supplementary Fig. S2, only a few smaller γ′ are dissolved back into the matrix during heating, i.e., growth of precipitates is more significant than dissolution. This explains the sharp decrease in concentration of Al and Ti in the matrix in this layer.

The previous sections indicate various phenomena such as an increase in phase fraction, further depletion of matrix composition, and new nucleation bursts during cooling. Analysis of the PSD after the final cooling of the build to room temperature allows a direct comparison to post-printing microstructural characterization. Fig. 11 shows the γ′ size distribution of layer 1 (460th layer from the top) after final cooling to room temperature. Precipitation of secondary γ′ is observed, leading to the multimodal size distribution of secondary and primary γ′. The secondary γ′ size falls within the 10–80 nm range. As expected, a further growth of the existing primary γ′ is also observed during cooling.

Fig. 11
3.3.2.3. γ′ chemistry after deposition

Fig. 12 shows the concentration of the major elements that form γ′ (Al, Ti, and Ni) in the primary and secondary γ′ at the bottom of the build, as calculated by MatCalc. The secondary γ′ has a higher Al content (13.5–14.5 at% Al), compared to 13 at% Al in the primary γ′. Additionally, within the secondary γ′, the smallest particles (∼10 nm) have higher Al contents than larger ones (∼70 nm). In contrast, for the primary γ′, there is no significant variation in the Al content as a function of their size. The Ni concentration in secondary γ′ (71.1–72 at%) is also higher in comparison to the primary γ′ (70 at%). The smallest secondary γ′ (∼10 nm) have higher Ni contents than larger ones (∼70 nm), whereas there is no substantial change in the Ni content of primary γ′, based on their size. As expected, Ti shows an opposite size-dependent variation. It ranges from ∼ 7.7–8.7 at% Ti in secondary γ′ to ∼9.2 at% in primary γ′. Similarly, within the secondary γ′, the smallest (∼10 nm) have lower Al contents than the larger ones (∼70 nm). No significant variation is observed for Ti content in primary γ′.

Fig. 12

4. Discussion

A combined modelling method is utilized to study the microstructural evolution during E-PBF of IN738. The presented results are discussed by examining the precipitation and dissolution mechanism of γ′ during thermal cycling. This is followed by a discussion on the phase fraction and size evolution of γ′ during thermal cycling and after final cooling. A brief discussion on carbide morphology is also made. Finally, a comparison is made between the simulation and experimental results to assess their agreement.

4.1. γ′ morphology as a function of build height

4.1.1. Nucleation of γ′

The fast precipitation kinetics of the γ′ phase enables formation of γ′ upon quenching from higher temperatures (above solvus) during thermal cycling [66]. In Fig. 7b, for a single layer in the full dissolution region, during cooling, the initial increase in nucleation rate signifies the first formation of nuclei. The slight increase in nucleation rate during partial dissolution, despite a decrease in the concentration of γ′ forming elements, may be explained by the nucleation kinetics. During partial dissolution and as the precipitates shrink, it is assumed that the regions at the vicinity of partially dissolved precipitates are enriched in γ′ forming elements [68][69]. This differs from the full dissolution region, in which case the chemical composition is evenly distributed in the matrix. Several authors have attributed the solute supersaturation of the matrix around primary γ′ to partial dissolution during isothermal ageing [69][70][71][72]. The enhanced supersaturation in the regions close to the precipitates results in a much higher driving force for nucleation, leading to a higher nucleation rate upon cooling. This phenomenon can be closely related to the several nucleation bursts upon continuous cooling of Ni-based superalloys, where second nucleation bursts exhibit higher nucleation rates [38][68][73][74].

At middle stages of partial dissolution, the reduction in the nucleation rate indicates that the existing composition and low supersaturation did not trigger nucleation as the matrix was closer to the equilibrium state. The end of a nucleation burst means that the supersaturation of Al and Ti has reached a low level, incapable of providing sufficient driving force during cooling to or holding at 1000 °C for further nucleation [73]. Earlier studies on Ni-based superalloys have reported the same phenomenon during ageing or continuous cooling from the solvus temperature to RT [38][73][74].

4.1.2. Dissolution of γ′ during thermal cycling

γ′ dissolution kinetics during heating are fast when compared to nucleation due to exponential increase in phase transformation and diffusion activities with temperature [65]. As shown in Fig. 9Fig. 10, and supplementary Figs. S2 and S3, the reduction in γ′ phase fraction and size during heating indicates γ′ dissolution. This is also revealed in Fig. 5 where phase fraction decreases upon heating. The extent of γ′ dissolution mostly depends on the temperature, time spent above γ′ solvus, and precipitate size [75][76][77]. Smaller γ′ precipitates are first to be dissolved [67][77][78]. This is mainly because more solute elements need to be transported away from large γ′ precipitates than from smaller ones [79]. Also, a high temperature above γ′ solvus temperature leads to a faster dissolution rate [80]. The equilibrium solvus temperature of γ′ in IN738 in our MatCalc simulation (Fig. 6) and as reported by Ojo et al. [47] is 1140 °C and 1130–1180 °C, respectively. This means the peak temperature experienced by previous layers decreases progressively from γ′ supersolvus to subsolvus, near-solvus, and far from solvus as the number of subsequent layers increases. Based on the above, it can be inferred that the degree of dissolution of γ′ contributes to the gradient in precipitate distribution.

Although the peak temperatures during later stages of partial dissolution are much lower than the equilibrium γ′ solvus, γ′ dissolution still occurs but at a significantly lower rate (supplementary Fig. S3). Wahlmann et al. [28] also reported a similar case where they observed the rapid dissolution of γ′ in CMSX-4 during fast heating and cooling cycles at temperatures below the γ′ solvus. They attributed this to the γ′ phase transformation process taking place in conditions far from the equilibrium. While the same reasoning may be valid for our study, we further believe that the greater surface area to volume ratio of the small γ′ precipitates contributed to this. This ratio means a larger area is available for solute atoms to diffuse into the matrix even at temperatures much below the solvus [81].

4.2. γ′ phase fraction and size evolution

4.2.1. During thermal cycling

In the first layer, the steep increase in γ′ phase fraction during heating (Fig. 5), which also represents γ′ precipitation in the powder before melting, has qualitatively been validated in [28]. The maximum phase fraction of 27% during the first few layers of thermal cycling indicates that IN738 theoretically could reach the equilibrium state (∼30%), but the short interlayer time at the build temperature counteracts this. The drop in phase fraction at middle stages of partial dissolution is due to the low number of γ′ nucleation sites [73]. It has been reported that a reduction of γ′ nucleation sites leads to a delay in obtaining the final volume fraction as more time is required for γ′ precipitates to grow and reach equilibrium [82]. This explains why even upon holding for 150 s before subsequent layer deposition, the phase fraction does not increase to those values that were observed in the previous full γ′ dissolution regions. Towards the end of deposition, the increase in phase fraction to the equilibrium value of 30% is as a result of the longer holding at build temperature or close to it [83].

During thermal cycling, γ′ particles begin to grow immediately after they first precipitate upon cooling. This is reflected in the rapid increase in phase fraction and size during cooling in Fig. 5 and supplementary Fig. S2, respectively. The rapid growth is due to the fast diffusion of solute elements at high temperatures [84]. The similar size of γ′ for the first 44 layers from the top can be attributed to the fact that all layers underwent complete dissolution and hence, experienced the same nucleation event and growth during deposition. This corresponds with the findings by Balikci et al. [85], who reported that the degree of γ′ precipitation in IN738LC does not change when a solution heat treatment is conducted above a certain critical temperature.

The increase in coarsening rate (Fig. 8) during thermal cycling can first be ascribed to the high peak temperature of the layers [86]. The coarsening rate of γ′ is known to increase rapidly with temperature due to the exponential growth of diffusion activity. Also, the simultaneous dissolution with coarsening could be another reason for the high coarsening rate, as γ′ coarsening is a diffusion-driven process where large particles grow by consuming smaller ones [78][84][86][87]. The steady growth of γ′ towards the bottom of the build is due to the much lower layer peak temperature, which is almost close to the build temperature, and reduced dissolution activity, as is seen in the much lower solute concentration in γ′ compared to those in the full and partial dissolution regions.

4.2.2. During cooling

The much higher phase fraction of ∼40% upon cooling signifies the tendency of γ′ to reach equilibrium at lower temperatures (Fig. 4). This is due to the precipitation of secondary γ′ and a further increase in the size of existing primary γ′, which leads to a multimodal size distribution of γ′ after cooling [38][73][88][89][90]. The reason for secondary γ′ formation during cooling is as follows: As cooling progresses, it becomes increasingly challenging to redistribute solute elements in the matrix owing to their lower mobility [38][73]. A higher supersaturation level in regions away from or free of the existing γ′ precipitates is achieved, making them suitable sites for additional nucleation bursts. More cooling leads to the growth of these secondary γ′ precipitates, but as the temperature and in turn, the solute diffusivity is low, growth remains slow.

4.3. Carbides

MC carbides in IN738 are known to have a significant impact on the high-temperature strength. They can also act as effective hardening particles and improve the creep resistance [91]. Precipitation of MC carbides in IN738 and several other superalloys is known to occur during solidification or thermal treatments (e.g., hot isostatic pressing) [92]. In our case, this means that the MC carbides within the E-PBF build formed because of the thermal exposure from the E-PBF thermal cycle in addition to initial solidification. Our simulation confirms this as MC carbides appear during layer heating (Fig. 5). The constant and stable phase fraction of MC carbides during thermal cycling can be attributed to their high melting point (∼1360 °C) and the short holding time at peak temperatures [75][93][94]. The solvus temperature for most MC carbides exceeds most of the peak temperatures observed in our simulation, and carbide dissolution kinetics at temperatures above the solvus are known to be comparably slow [95]. The stable phase fraction and random distribution of MC carbides signifies the slight influence on the gradient in hardness.

4.4. Comparison of simulations and experiments

4.4.1. Precipitate phase fraction and morphology as a function of build height

A qualitative agreement is observed for the phase fraction of carbides, i.e. ∼0.8% in the experiment and ∼0.9% in the simulation. The phase fraction of γ′ differs, with the experiment reporting a value of ∼51% and the simulation, 40%. Despite this, the size distribution of primary γ′ along the build shows remarkable consistency between experimental and computational analyses. It is worth noting that the primary γ′ morphology in the experimental analysis is observed in the as-fabricated state, whereas the simulation (Fig. 8) captures it during deposition process. The primary γ′ size in the experiment is expected to experience additional growth during the cooling phase. Regardless, both show similar trends in primary γ′ size increments from the top to the bottom of the build. The larger primary γ’ size in the simulation versus the experiment can be attributed to the fact that experimental and simulation results are based on 2D and 3D data, respectively. The absence of stereological considerations [96] in our analysis could have led to an underestimation of the precipitate sizes from SEM measurements. The early starts of coarsening (8th layer) in the experiment compared to the simulation (45th layer) can be attributed to a higher actual γ′ solvus temperature than considered in our simulation [47]. The solvus temperature of γ′ in a Ni-based superalloy is mainly determined by the detailed composition. A high amount of Cr and Co are known to reduce the solvus temperature, whereas Ta and Mo will increase it [97][98][99]. The elemental composition from our experimental work was used for the simulation except for Ta. It should be noted that Ta is not included in the thermodynamic database in MatCalc used, and this may have reduced the solvus temperature. This could also explain the relatively higher γ′ phase fraction in the experiment than in simulation, as a higher γ′ solvus temperature will cause more γ′ to precipitate and grow early during cooling [99][100].

Another possible cause of this deviation can be attributed to the extent of γ′ dissolution, which is mainly determined by the peak temperature. It can be speculated that individual peak temperatures at different layers in the simulation may have been over-predicted. However, one needs to consider that the true thermal profile is likely more complicated in the actual E-PBF process [101]. For example, the current model assumes that the thermophysical properties of the material are temperature-independent, which is not realistic. Many materials, including IN738, exhibit temperature-dependent properties such as thermal conductivityspecific heat capacity, and density [102]. This means that heat transfer simulations may underestimate or overestimate the temperature gradients and cooling rates within the powder bed and the solidified part. Additionally, the model does not account for the reduced thermal diffusivity through unmelted powder, where gas separating the powder acts as insulation, impeding the heat flow [1]. In E-PBF, the unmelted powder regions with trapped gas have lower thermal diffusivity compared to the fully melted regions, leading to localized temperature variations, and altered solidification behavior. These limitations can impact the predictions, particularly in relation to the carbide dissolution, as the peak temperatures may be underestimated.

While acknowledging these limitations, it is worth emphasizing that achieving a detailed and accurate representation of each layer’s heat source would impose tough computational challenges. Given the substantial layer count in E-PBF, our decision to employ a semi-analytical approximation strikes a balance between computational feasibility and the capture of essential trends in thermal profiles across diverse build layers. In future work, a dual-calibration strategy is proposed to further reduce simulation-experiment disparities. By refining temperature-independent thermophysical property approximations and absorptivity in the heat source model, and by optimizing interfacial energy descriptions in the kinetic model, the predictive precision could be enhanced. Further refining the simulation controls, such as adjusting the precipitate class size may enhance quantitative comparisons between modeling outcomes and experimental data in future work.

4.4.2. Multimodal size distribution of γ′ and concentration

Another interesting feature that sees qualitative agreement between the simulation and the experiment is the multimodal size distribution of γ′. The formation of secondary γ′ particles in the experiment and most E-PBF Ni-based superalloys is suggested to occur at low temperatures, during final cooling to RT [16][73][90]. However, so far, this conclusion has been based on findings from various continuous cooling experiments, as the study of the evolution during AM would require an in-situ approach. Our simulation unambiguously confirms this in an AM context by providing evidence for secondary γ′ precipitation during slow cooling to RT. Additionally, it is possible to speculate that the chemical segregation occurring during solidification, due to the preferential partitioning of certain elements between the solid and liquid phases, can contribute to the multimodal size distribution during deposition [51]. This is because chemical segregation can result in variations in the local composition of superalloys, which subsequently affects the nucleation and growth of γ′. Regions with higher concentrations of alloying elements will encourage the formation of larger γ′ particles, while regions with lower concentrations may favor the nucleation of smaller precipitates. However, it is important to acknowledge that the elevated temperature during the E-PBF process will largely homogenize these compositional differences [103][104].

A good correlation is also shown in the composition of major γ′ forming elements (Al and Ti) in primary and secondary γ′. Both experiment and simulation show an increasing trend for Al content and a decreasing trend for Ti content from primary to secondary γ′. The slight composition differences between primary and secondary γ′ particles are due to the different diffusivity of γ′ stabilizers at different thermal conditions [105][106]. As the formation of multimodal γ′ particles with different sizes occurs over a broad temperature range, the phase chemistry of γ′ will be highly size dependent. The changes in the chemistry of various γ′ (primary, secondary, and tertiary) have received significant attention since they have a direct influence on the performance [68][105][107][108][109]. Chen et al. [108][109], reported a high Al content in the smallest γ′ precipitates compared to the largest, while Ti showed an opposite trend during continuous cooling in a RR1000 Ni-based superalloy. This was attributed to the temperature and cooling rate at which the γ′ precipitates were formed. The smallest precipitates formed last, at the lowest temperature and cooling rate. A comparable observation is evident in the present investigation, where the secondary γ′ forms at a low temperature and cooling rate in comparison to the primary. The temperature dependence of γ′ chemical composition is further evidenced in supplementary Fig. S4, which shows the equilibrium chemical composition of γ′ as a function of temperature.

5. Conclusions

A correlative modelling approach capable of predicting solid-state phase transformations kinetics in metal AM was developed. This approach involves computational simulations with a semi-analytical heat transfer model and the MatCalc thermo-kinetic software. The method was used to predict the phase transformation kinetics and detailed morphology and chemistry of γ′ and MC during E-PBF of IN738 Ni-based superalloy. The main conclusions are:

  • 1.The computational simulations are in qualitative agreement with the experimental observations. This is particularly true for the γ′ size distribution along the build height, the multimodal size distribution of particles, and the phase fraction of MC carbides.
  • 2.The deviations between simulation and experiment in terms of γ′ phase fraction and location in the build are most likely attributed to a higher γ′ solvus temperature during the experiment than in the simulation, which is argued to be related to the absence of Ta in the MatCalc database.
  • 3.The dissolution and precipitation of γ′ occur fast and under non-equilibrium conditions. The level of γ′ dissolution determines the gradient in γ′ size distribution along the build. After thermal cycling, the final cooling to room temperature has further significant impacts on the final γ′ size, morphology, and distribution.
  • 4.A negligible amount of γ′ forms in the first deposited layer before subsequent layer deposition, and a small amount of γ′ may also form in the powder induced by the 1000 °C elevated build temperature before melting.

Our findings confirm the suitability of MatCalc to predict the microstructural evolution at various positions throughout a build in a Ni-based superalloy during E-PBF. It also showcases the suitability of a tool which was originally developed for traditional thermo-mechanical processing of alloys to the new additive manufacturing context. Our simulation capabilities are likely extendable to other alloy systems that undergo solid-state phase transformations implemented in MatCalc (various steels, Ni-based superalloys, and Al-alloys amongst others) as well as other AM processes such as L-DED and L-PBF which have different thermal cycle characteristics. New tools to predict the microstructural evolution and properties during metal AM are important as they provide new insights into the complexities of AM. This will enable control and design of AM microstructures towards advanced materials properties and performances.

CRediT authorship contribution statement

Primig Sophie: Writing – review & editing, Supervision, Resources, Project administration, Funding acquisition, Conceptualization. Adomako Nana Kwabena: Writing – original draft, Writing – review & editing, Visualization, Software, Investigation, Formal analysis, Conceptualization. Haghdadi Nima: Writing – review & editing, Supervision, Project administration, Methodology, Conceptualization. Dingle James F.L.: Methodology, Conceptualization, Software, Writing – review & editing, Visualization. Kozeschnik Ernst: Writing – review & editing, Software, Methodology. Liao Xiaozhou: Writing – review & editing, Project administration, Funding acquisition. Ringer Simon P: Writing – review & editing, Project administration, Funding acquisition.

Declaration of Competing Interest

The authors declare that they have no known competing financial interests or personal relationships that could have appeared to influence the work reported in this paper.

Acknowledgements

This research was sponsored by the Department of Industry, Innovation, and Science under the auspices of the AUSMURI program – which is a part of the Commonwealth’s Next Generation Technologies Fund. The authors acknowledge the facilities and the scientific and technical assistance at the Electron Microscope Unit (EMU) within the Mark Wainwright Analytical Centre (MWAC) at UNSW Sydney and Microscopy Australia. Nana Adomako is supported by a UNSW Scientia PhD scholarship. Michael Haines’ (UNSW Sydney) contribution to the revised version of the original manuscript is thankfully acknowledged.

Appendix A. Supplementary material

Download : Download Word document (462KB)

Supplementary material.

Data Availability

Data will be made available on request.

References

Figure 2 Modeling the plant with cylindrical tubes at the bottom of the canal.

Optimized Vegetation Density to Dissipate Energy of Flood Flow in Open Canals

열린 운하에서 홍수 흐름의 에너지를 분산시키기 위해 최적화된 식생 밀도

Mahdi Feizbahr,1Navid Tonekaboni,2Guang-Jun Jiang,3,4and Hong-Xia Chen3,4
Academic Editor: Mohammad Yazdi

Abstract

강을 따라 식생은 조도를 증가시키고 평균 유속을 감소시키며, 유동 에너지를 감소시키고 강 횡단면의 유속 프로파일을 변경합니다. 자연의 많은 운하와 강은 홍수 동안 초목으로 덮여 있습니다. 운하의 조도는 식물의 영향을 많이 받기 때문에 홍수시 유동저항에 큰 영향을 미친다. 식물로 인한 흐름에 대한 거칠기 저항은 흐름 조건과 식물에 따라 달라지므로 모델은 유속, 유속 깊이 및 수로를 따라 식생 유형의 영향을 고려하여 유속을 시뮬레이션해야 합니다. 총 48개의 모델을 시뮬레이션하여 근관의 거칠기 효과를 조사했습니다. 결과는 속도를 높임으로써 베드 속도를 감소시키는 식생의 영향이 무시할만하다는 것을 나타냅니다.

Abstract

Vegetation along the river increases the roughness and reduces the average flow velocity, reduces flow energy, and changes the flow velocity profile in the cross section of the river. Many canals and rivers in nature are covered with vegetation during the floods. Canal’s roughness is strongly affected by plants and therefore it has a great effect on flow resistance during flood. Roughness resistance against the flow due to the plants depends on the flow conditions and plant, so the model should simulate the current velocity by considering the effects of velocity, depth of flow, and type of vegetation along the canal. Total of 48 models have been simulated to investigate the effect of roughness in the canal. The results indicated that, by enhancing the velocity, the effect of vegetation in decreasing the bed velocity is negligible, while when the current has lower speed, the effect of vegetation on decreasing the bed velocity is obviously considerable.

1. Introduction

Considering the impact of each variable is a very popular field within the analytical and statistical methods and intelligent systems [114]. This can help research for better modeling considering the relation of variables or interaction of them toward reaching a better condition for the objective function in control and engineering [1527]. Consequently, it is necessary to study the effects of the passive factors on the active domain [2836]. Because of the effect of vegetation on reducing the discharge capacity of rivers [37], pruning plants was necessary to improve the condition of rivers. One of the important effects of vegetation in river protection is the action of roots, which cause soil consolidation and soil structure improvement and, by enhancing the shear strength of soil, increase the resistance of canal walls against the erosive force of water. The outer limbs of the plant increase the roughness of the canal walls and reduce the flow velocity and deplete the flow energy in vicinity of the walls. Vegetation by reducing the shear stress of the canal bed reduces flood discharge and sedimentation in the intervals between vegetation and increases the stability of the walls [3841].

One of the main factors influencing the speed, depth, and extent of flood in this method is Manning’s roughness coefficient. On the other hand, soil cover [42], especially vegetation, is one of the most determining factors in Manning’s roughness coefficient. Therefore, it is expected that those seasonal changes in the vegetation of the region will play an important role in the calculated value of Manning’s roughness coefficient and ultimately in predicting the flood wave behavior [4345]. The roughness caused by plants’ resistance to flood current depends on the flow and plant conditions. Flow conditions include depth and velocity of the plant, and plant conditions include plant type, hardness or flexibility, dimensions, density, and shape of the plant [46]. In general, the issue discussed in this research is the optimization of flood-induced flow in canals by considering the effect of vegetation-induced roughness. Therefore, the effect of plants on the roughness coefficient and canal transmission coefficient and in consequence the flow depth should be evaluated [4748].

Current resistance is generally known by its roughness coefficient. The equation that is mainly used in this field is Manning equation. The ratio of shear velocity to average current velocity  is another form of current resistance. The reason for using the  ratio is that it is dimensionless and has a strong theoretical basis. The reason for using Manning roughness coefficient is its pervasiveness. According to Freeman et al. [49], the Manning roughness coefficient for plants was calculated according to the Kouwen and Unny [50] method for incremental resistance. This method involves increasing the roughness for various surface and plant irregularities. Manning’s roughness coefficient has all the factors affecting the resistance of the canal. Therefore, the appropriate way to more accurately estimate this coefficient is to know the factors affecting this coefficient [51].

To calculate the flow rate, velocity, and depth of flow in canals as well as flood and sediment estimation, it is important to evaluate the flow resistance. To determine the flow resistance in open ducts, Manning, Chézy, and Darcy–Weisbach relations are used [52]. In these relations, there are parameters such as Manning’s roughness coefficient (n), Chézy roughness coefficient (C), and Darcy–Weisbach coefficient (f). All three of these coefficients are a kind of flow resistance coefficient that is widely used in the equations governing flow in rivers [53].

The three relations that express the relationship between the average flow velocity (V) and the resistance and geometric and hydraulic coefficients of the canal are as follows:where nf, and c are Manning, Darcy–Weisbach, and Chézy coefficients, respectively. V = average flow velocity, R = hydraulic radius, Sf = slope of energy line, which in uniform flow is equal to the slope of the canal bed,  = gravitational acceleration, and Kn is a coefficient whose value is equal to 1 in the SI system and 1.486 in the English system. The coefficients of resistance in equations (1) to (3) are related as follows:

Based on the boundary layer theory, the flow resistance for rough substrates is determined from the following general relation:where f = Darcy–Weisbach coefficient of friction, y = flow depth, Ks = bed roughness size, and A = constant coefficient.

On the other hand, the relationship between the Darcy–Weisbach coefficient of friction and the shear velocity of the flow is as follows:

By using equation (6), equation (5) is converted as follows:

Investigation on the effect of vegetation arrangement on shear velocity of flow in laboratory conditions showed that, with increasing the shear Reynolds number (), the numerical value of the  ratio also increases; in other words the amount of roughness coefficient increases with a slight difference in the cases without vegetation, checkered arrangement, and cross arrangement, respectively [54].

Roughness in river vegetation is simulated in mathematical models with a variable floor slope flume by different densities and discharges. The vegetation considered submerged in the bed of the flume. Results showed that, with increasing vegetation density, canal roughness and flow shear speed increase and with increasing flow rate and depth, Manning’s roughness coefficient decreases. Factors affecting the roughness caused by vegetation include the effect of plant density and arrangement on flow resistance, the effect of flow velocity on flow resistance, and the effect of depth [4555].

One of the works that has been done on the effect of vegetation on the roughness coefficient is Darby [56] study, which investigates a flood wave model that considers all the effects of vegetation on the roughness coefficient. There are currently two methods for estimating vegetation roughness. One method is to add the thrust force effect to Manning’s equation [475758] and the other method is to increase the canal bed roughness (Manning-Strickler coefficient) [455961]. These two methods provide acceptable results in models designed to simulate floodplain flow. Wang et al. [62] simulate the floodplain with submerged vegetation using these two methods and to increase the accuracy of the results, they suggested using the effective height of the plant under running water instead of using the actual height of the plant. Freeman et al. [49] provided equations for determining the coefficient of vegetation roughness under different conditions. Lee et al. [63] proposed a method for calculating the Manning coefficient using the flow velocity ratio at different depths. Much research has been done on the Manning roughness coefficient in rivers, and researchers [496366] sought to obtain a specific number for n to use in river engineering. However, since the depth and geometric conditions of rivers are completely variable in different places, the values of Manning roughness coefficient have changed subsequently, and it has not been possible to choose a fixed number. In river engineering software, the Manning roughness coefficient is determined only for specific and constant conditions or normal flow. Lee et al. [63] stated that seasonal conditions, density, and type of vegetation should also be considered. Hydraulic roughness and Manning roughness coefficient n of the plant were obtained by estimating the total Manning roughness coefficient from the matching of the measured water surface curve and water surface height. The following equation is used for the flow surface curve:where  is the depth of water change, S0 is the slope of the canal floor, Sf is the slope of the energy line, and Fr is the Froude number which is obtained from the following equation:where D is the characteristic length of the canal. Flood flow velocity is one of the important parameters of flood waves, which is very important in calculating the water level profile and energy consumption. In the cases where there are many limitations for researchers due to the wide range of experimental dimensions and the variety of design parameters, the use of numerical methods that are able to estimate the rest of the unknown results with acceptable accuracy is economically justified.

FLOW-3D software uses Finite Difference Method (FDM) for numerical solution of two-dimensional and three-dimensional flow. This software is dedicated to computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and is provided by Flow Science [67]. The flow is divided into networks with tubular cells. For each cell there are values of dependent variables and all variables are calculated in the center of the cell, except for the velocity, which is calculated at the center of the cell. In this software, two numerical techniques have been used for geometric simulation, FAVOR™ (Fractional-Area-Volume-Obstacle-Representation) and the VOF (Volume-of-Fluid) method. The equations used at this model for this research include the principle of mass survival and the magnitude of motion as follows. The fluid motion equations in three dimensions, including the Navier–Stokes equations with some additional terms, are as follows:where  are mass accelerations in the directions xyz and  are viscosity accelerations in the directions xyz and are obtained from the following equations:

Shear stresses  in equation (11) are obtained from the following equations:

The standard model is used for high Reynolds currents, but in this model, RNG theory allows the analytical differential formula to be used for the effective viscosity that occurs at low Reynolds numbers. Therefore, the RNG model can be used for low and high Reynolds currents.

Weather changes are high and this affects many factors continuously. The presence of vegetation in any area reduces the velocity of surface flows and prevents soil erosion, so vegetation will have a significant impact on reducing destructive floods. One of the methods of erosion protection in floodplain watersheds is the use of biological methods. The presence of vegetation in watersheds reduces the flow rate during floods and prevents soil erosion. The external organs of plants increase the roughness and decrease the velocity of water flow and thus reduce its shear stress energy. One of the important factors with which the hydraulic resistance of plants is expressed is the roughness coefficient. Measuring the roughness coefficient of plants and investigating their effect on reducing velocity and shear stress of flow is of special importance.

Roughness coefficients in canals are affected by two main factors, namely, flow conditions and vegetation characteristics [68]. So far, much research has been done on the effect of the roughness factor created by vegetation, but the issue of plant density has received less attention. For this purpose, this study was conducted to investigate the effect of vegetation density on flow velocity changes.

In a study conducted using a software model on three density modes in the submerged state effect on flow velocity changes in 48 different modes was investigated (Table 1).

Table 1 

The studied models.

The number of cells used in this simulation is equal to 1955888 cells. The boundary conditions were introduced to the model as a constant speed and depth (Figure 1). At the output boundary, due to the presence of supercritical current, no parameter for the current is considered. Absolute roughness for floors and walls was introduced to the model (Figure 1). In this case, the flow was assumed to be nonviscous and air entry into the flow was not considered. After  seconds, this model reached a convergence accuracy of .

Figure 1 

The simulated model and its boundary conditions.

Due to the fact that it is not possible to model the vegetation in FLOW-3D software, in this research, the vegetation of small soft plants was studied so that Manning’s coefficients can be entered into the canal bed in the form of roughness coefficients obtained from the studies of Chow [69] in similar conditions. In practice, in such modeling, the effect of plant height is eliminated due to the small height of herbaceous plants, and modeling can provide relatively acceptable results in these conditions.

48 models with input velocities proportional to the height of the regular semihexagonal canal were considered to create supercritical conditions. Manning coefficients were applied based on Chow [69] studies in order to control the canal bed. Speed profiles were drawn and discussed.

Any control and simulation system has some inputs that we should determine to test any technology [7077]. Determination and true implementation of such parameters is one of the key steps of any simulation [237881] and computing procedure [8286]. The input current is created by applying the flow rate through the VFR (Volume Flow Rate) option and the output flow is considered Output and for other borders the Symmetry option is considered.

Simulation of the models and checking their action and responses and observing how a process behaves is one of the accepted methods in engineering and science [8788]. For verification of FLOW-3D software, the results of computer simulations are compared with laboratory measurements and according to the values of computational error, convergence error, and the time required for convergence, the most appropriate option for real-time simulation is selected (Figures 2 and 3 ).

Figure 2 

Modeling the plant with cylindrical tubes at the bottom of the canal.

Figure 3 

Velocity profiles in positions 2 and 5.

The canal is 7 meters long, 0.5 meters wide, and 0.8 meters deep. This test was used to validate the application of the software to predict the flow rate parameters. In this experiment, instead of using the plant, cylindrical pipes were used in the bottom of the canal.

The conditions of this modeling are similar to the laboratory conditions and the boundary conditions used in the laboratory were used for numerical modeling. The critical flow enters the simulation model from the upstream boundary, so in the upstream boundary conditions, critical velocity and depth are considered. The flow at the downstream boundary is supercritical, so no parameters are applied to the downstream boundary.

The software well predicts the process of changing the speed profile in the open canal along with the considered obstacles. The error in the calculated speed values can be due to the complexity of the flow and the interaction of the turbulence caused by the roughness of the floor with the turbulence caused by the three-dimensional cycles in the hydraulic jump. As a result, the software is able to predict the speed distribution in open canals.

2. Modeling Results

After analyzing the models, the results were shown in graphs (Figures 414 ). The total number of experiments in this study was 48 due to the limitations of modeling.


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Figure 4 

Flow velocity profiles for canals with a depth of 1 m and flow velocities of 3–3.3 m/s. Canal with a depth of 1 meter and a flow velocity of (a) 3 meters per second, (b) 3.1 meters per second, (c) 3.2 meters per second, and (d) 3.3 meters per second.

Figure 5 

Canal diagram with a depth of 1 meter and a flow rate of 3 meters per second.

Figure 6 

Canal diagram with a depth of 1 meter and a flow rate of 3.1 meters per second.

Figure 7 

Canal diagram with a depth of 1 meter and a flow rate of 3.2 meters per second.

Figure 8 

Canal diagram with a depth of 1 meter and a flow rate of 3.3 meters per second.


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Figure 9 

Flow velocity profiles for canals with a depth of 2 m and flow velocities of 4–4.3 m/s. Canal with a depth of 2 meters and a flow rate of (a) 4 meters per second, (b) 4.1 meters per second, (c) 4.2 meters per second, and (d) 4.3 meters per second.

Figure 10 

Canal diagram with a depth of 2 meters and a flow rate of 4 meters per second.

Figure 11 

Canal diagram with a depth of 2 meters and a flow rate of 4.1 meters per second.

Figure 12 

Canal diagram with a depth of 2 meters and a flow rate of 4.2 meters per second.

Figure 13 

Canal diagram with a depth of 2 meters and a flow rate of 4.3 meters per second.


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Figure 14 

Flow velocity profiles for canals with a depth of 3 m and flow velocities of 5–5.3 m/s. Canal with a depth of 2 meters and a flow rate of (a) 4 meters per second, (b) 4.1 meters per second, (c) 4.2 meters per second, and (d) 4.3 meters per second.

To investigate the effects of roughness with flow velocity, the trend of flow velocity changes at different depths and with supercritical flow to a Froude number proportional to the depth of the section has been obtained.

According to the velocity profiles of Figure 5, it can be seen that, with the increasing of Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases.

According to Figures 5 to 8, it can be found that, with increasing the Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases. But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of the models 1 to 12, which can be justified by increasing the speed and of course increasing the Froude number.

According to Figure 10, we see that, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases.

According to Figure 11, we see that, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases. But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of Figures 510, which can be justified by increasing the speed and, of course, increasing the Froude number.

With increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases (Figure 12). But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of the higher models (Figures 58 and 1011), which can be justified by increasing the speed and, of course, increasing the Froude number.

According to Figure 13, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases. But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of Figures 5 to 12, which can be justified by increasing the speed and, of course, increasing the Froude number.

According to Figure 15, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases.

Figure 15 

Canal diagram with a depth of 3 meters and a flow rate of 5 meters per second.

According to Figure 16, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases. But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of the higher model, which can be justified by increasing the speed and, of course, increasing the Froude number.

Figure 16 

Canal diagram with a depth of 3 meters and a flow rate of 5.1 meters per second.

According to Figure 17, it is clear that, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases. But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of the higher models, which can be justified by increasing the speed and, of course, increasing the Froude number.

Figure 17 

Canal diagram with a depth of 3 meters and a flow rate of 5.2 meters per second.

According to Figure 18, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases. But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of the higher models, which can be justified by increasing the speed and, of course, increasing the Froude number.

Figure 18 

Canal diagram with a depth of 3 meters and a flow rate of 5.3 meters per second.

According to Figure 19, it can be seen that the vegetation placed in front of the flow input velocity has negligible effect on the reduction of velocity, which of course can be justified due to the flexibility of the vegetation. The only unusual thing is the unexpected decrease in floor speed of 3 m/s compared to higher speeds.


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Figure 19 

Comparison of velocity profiles with the same plant densities (depth 1 m). Comparison of velocity profiles with (a) plant densities of 25%, depth 1 m; (b) plant densities of 50%, depth 1 m; and (c) plant densities of 75%, depth 1 m.

According to Figure 20, by increasing the speed of vegetation, the effect of vegetation on reducing the flow rate becomes more noticeable. And the role of input current does not have much effect in reducing speed.


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Figure 20 

Comparison of velocity profiles with the same plant densities (depth 2 m). Comparison of velocity profiles with (a) plant densities of 25%, depth 2 m; (b) plant densities of 50%, depth 2 m; and (c) plant densities of 75%, depth 2 m.

According to Figure 21, it can be seen that, with increasing speed, the effect of vegetation on reducing the bed flow rate becomes more noticeable and the role of the input current does not have much effect. In general, it can be seen that, by increasing the speed of the input current, the slope of the profiles increases from the bed to the water surface and due to the fact that, in software, the roughness coefficient applies to the channel floor only in the boundary conditions, this can be perfectly justified. Of course, it can be noted that, due to the flexible conditions of the vegetation of the bed, this modeling can show acceptable results for such grasses in the canal floor. In the next directions, we may try application of swarm-based optimization methods for modeling and finding the most effective factors in this research [27815188994]. In future, we can also apply the simulation logic and software of this research for other domains such as power engineering [9599].


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Figure 21 

Comparison of velocity profiles with the same plant densities (depth 3 m). Comparison of velocity profiles with (a) plant densities of 25%, depth 3 m; (b) plant densities of 50%, depth 3 m; and (c) plant densities of 75%, depth 3 m.

3. Conclusion

The effects of vegetation on the flood canal were investigated by numerical modeling with FLOW-3D software. After analyzing the results, the following conclusions were reached:(i)Increasing the density of vegetation reduces the velocity of the canal floor but has no effect on the velocity of the canal surface.(ii)Increasing the Froude number is directly related to increasing the speed of the canal floor.(iii)In the canal with a depth of one meter, a sudden increase in speed can be observed from the lowest speed and higher speed, which is justified by the sudden increase in Froude number.(iv)As the inlet flow rate increases, the slope of the profiles from the bed to the water surface increases.(v)By reducing the Froude number, the effect of vegetation on reducing the flow bed rate becomes more noticeable. And the input velocity in reducing the velocity of the canal floor does not have much effect.(vi)At a flow rate between 3 and 3.3 meters per second due to the shallow depth of the canal and the higher landing number a more critical area is observed in which the flow bed velocity in this area is between 2.86 and 3.1 m/s.(vii)Due to the critical flow velocity and the slight effect of the roughness of the horseshoe vortex floor, it is not visible and is only partially observed in models 1-2-3 and 21.(viii)As the flow rate increases, the effect of vegetation on the rate of bed reduction decreases.(ix)In conditions where less current intensity is passing, vegetation has a greater effect on reducing current intensity and energy consumption increases.(x)In the case of using the flow rate of 0.8 cubic meters per second, the velocity distribution and flow regime show about 20% more energy consumption than in the case of using the flow rate of 1.3 cubic meters per second.

Nomenclature

n:Manning’s roughness coefficient
C:Chézy roughness coefficient
f:Darcy–Weisbach coefficient
V:Flow velocity
R:Hydraulic radius
g:Gravitational acceleration
y:Flow depth
Ks:Bed roughness
A:Constant coefficient
:Reynolds number
y/∂x:Depth of water change
S0:Slope of the canal floor
Sf:Slope of energy line
Fr:Froude number
D:Characteristic length of the canal
G:Mass acceleration
:Shear stresses.

Data Availability

All data are included within the paper.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Acknowledgments

This work was partially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China under Contract no. 71761030 and Natural Science Foundation of Inner Mongolia under Contract no. 2019LH07003.

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Numerical simulation on molten pool behavior of narrow gap gas tungsten arc welding

좁은 간격 가스 텅스텐 아크 용접의 용융 풀 거동에 대한 수치 시뮬레이션

Numerical simulation on molten pool behavior of narrow gap gas tungsten arc welding

The International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology (2023)Cite this article

Abstract

As a highly efficient thick plate welding resolution, narrow gap gas tungsten arc welding (NG-GTAW) is in the face of a series of problems like inter-layer defects like pores, lack of fusion, inclusion of impurity, and the sensitivity to poor sidewall fusion, which is hard to be repaired after the welding process. This study employs numerical simulation to investigate the molten pool behavior in NG-GTAW root welding. A 3D numerical model was established, where a body-fitted coordinate system was applied to simulate the electromagnetic force, and a bridge transition model was developed to investigate the wire–feed root welding. The simulated results were validated experimentally. Results show that the molten pool behavior is dominated by electromagnetic force when the welding current is relatively high, and the dynamic change of the vortex actually determines the molten pool morphology. For self-fusion welding, there are two symmetric inward vortices in the cross-section and one clockwise vortex in the longitudinal section. With the increasing welding current, the vortices in the cross-section gradually move to the arc center with a decreasing range, while the vortex in the longitudinal section moves backward. With the increasing traveling speed, the vortices in the cross-section move toward the surface of the molten pool with a decreasing range, and the horizontal component of liquid metal velocity changes in the longitudinal section. For wire–feed welding, the filling metal strengthens the downward velocity component; as a result, the vortex formation is blocked in the cross-section and is strengthened in the longitudinal section.

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Data availability

The raw/processed data required cannot be shared at this time as the data also forms part of an ongoing study.

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Development of macro-defect-free PBF-EB-processed Ti–6Al–4V alloys with superior plasticity using PREP-synthesized powder and machine learning-assisted process optimization

Development of macro-defect-free PBF-EB-processed Ti–6Al–4V alloys with superior plasticity using PREP-synthesized powder and machine learning-assisted process optimization

Yunwei GuiabKenta Aoyagib Akihiko Chibab
aDepartment of Materials Processing, Graduate School of Engineering, Tohoku University, 6-6 Aramaki Aza Aoba, Aoba-ku, Sendai, 980-8579, Japan
bInstitute for Materials Research, Tohoku University, 2-1-1 Katahira, Aoba-ku, Sendai, 980-8577, Japan

Received 14 October 2022, Revised 23 December 2022, Accepted 3 January 2023, Available online 5 January 2023.Show lessAdd to MendeleyShareCite

https://doi.org/10.1016/j.msea.2023.144595Get rights and content

Abstract

The elimination of internal macro-defects is a key issue in Ti–6Al–4V alloys fabricated via powder bed fusion using electron beams (PBF-EB), wherein internal macro-defects mainly originate from the virgin powder and inappropriate printing parameters. This study compares different types powders by combining support vector machine techniques to determine the most suitable powder for PBF-EB and to predict the processing window for the printing parameters without internal macro-defects. The results show that powders fabricated via plasma rotating electrode process have the best sphericity, flowability, and minimal porosity and are most suitable for printing. Surface roughness criterion was also applied to determine the quality of the even surfaces, and support vector machine was used to construct processing maps capable of predicting a wide range of four-dimensional printing parameters to obtain macro-defect-free samples, offering the possibility of subsequent development of Ti–6Al–4V alloys with excellent properties. The macro-defect-free samples exhibited good elongation, with the best overall mechanical properties being the ultimate tensile strength and elongation of 934.7 MPa and 24.3%, respectively. The elongation of the three macro-defect-free samples was much higher than that previously reported for additively manufactured Ti–6Al–4V alloys. The high elongation of the samples in this work is mainly attributed to the elimination of internal macro-defects.

Introduction

Additive manufacturing (AM) technologies can rapidly manufacture complex or custom parts, reducing process steps and saving manufacturing time [[1], [2], [3], [4]], and are widely used in the aerospace, automotive, and other precision industries [5,6]. Powder bed fusion using an electron beam (PBF-EB) is an additive manufacturing method that uses a high-energy electron beam to melt metal powders layer by layer to produce parts. In contrast to selective laser melting, PBF-EB involves the preparation of samples in a high vacuum environment, which effectively prevents the introduction of impurities such as O and N. It also involves a preheating process for the print substrate and powder, which reduces residual thermal stress on the sample and subsequent heat treatment processes [[2], [3], [4],7]. Due to these features and advantages, PBF-EB technology is a very important AM technology with great potential in metallic materials. Moreover, PBF-EB is the ideal AM technology for the manufacture of complex components made of many alloys, such as titanium alloys, nickel-based superalloys, aluminum alloys and stainless steels [[2], [3], [4],8].

Ti–6Al–4V alloy is one of the prevalent commercial titanium alloys possessing high specific strength, excellent mechanical properties, excellent corrosion resistance, and good biocompatibility [9,10]. It is widely used in applications requiring low density and excellent corrosion resistance, such as the aerospace industry and biomechanical applications [11,12]. The mechanical properties of PBF-EB-processed Ti–6Al–4V alloys are superior to those fabricated by casting or forging, because the rapid cooling rate in PBF-EB results in finer grains [[12], [13], [14], [15], [16], [17], [18]]. However, the PBF-EB-fabricated parts often include internal macro-defects, which compromises their mechanical properties [[19], [20], [21], [22]]. This study focused on the elimination of macro-defects, such as porosity, lack of fusion, incomplete penetration and unmelted powders, which distinguishes them from micro-defects such as vacancies, dislocations, grain boundaries and secondary phases, etc. Large-sized fusion defects cause a severe reduction in mechanical strength. Smaller defects, such as pores and cracks, lead to the initiation of fatigue cracking and rapidly accelerate the cracking process [23]. The issue of internal macro-defects must be addressed to expand the application of the PBF-EB technology. The main studies for controlling internal macro-defects are online monitoring of defects, remelting and hot isostatic pressing (HIP). The literatures [24,25] report the use of infrared imaging or other imaging techniques to identify defects, but the monitoring of smaller sized defects is still not adequate. And in some cases remelting does not reduce the internal macro-defects of the part, but instead causes coarsening of the macrostructure and volatilization of some metal elements [23]. The HIP treatment does not completely eliminate the internal macro-defects, the original defect location may still act as a point of origin of the crack, and the subsequent treatment will consume more time and economic costs [23]. Therefore, optimizing suitable printing parameters to avoid internal macro-defects in printed parts at source is of great industrial value and research significance, and is an urgent issue in PBF-EB related technology.

There are two causes of internal macro-defects in the AM process: gas pores trapped in the virgin powder and the inappropriate printing parameters [7,23]. Gui et al. [26] classify internal macro-defects during PBF-EB process according to their shape, such as spherical defects, elongated shape defects, flat shape defects and other irregular shape defects. Of these, spherical defects mainly originate from raw material powders. Other shape defects mainly originate from lack of fusion or unmelted powders caused by unsuitable printing parameters, etc. The PBF-EB process requires powders with good flowability, and spherical powders are typically chosen as raw materials. The prevalent techniques for the fabrication of pre-alloyed powders are gas atomization (GA), plasma atomization (PA), and the plasma rotating electrode process (PREP) [27,28]. These methods yield powders with different characteristics that affect the subsequent fabrication. The selection of a suitable powder for PBF-EB is particularly important to produce Ti–6Al–4V alloys without internal macro-defects. The need to optimize several printing parameters such as beam current, scan speed, line offset, and focus offset make it difficult to eliminate internal macro-defects that occur during printing [23]. Most of the studies [11,12,22,[29], [30], [31], [32], [33]] on the optimization of AM processes for Ti–6Al–4V alloys have focused on samples with a limited set of parameters (e.g., power–scan speed) and do not allow for the guidance and development of unknown process windows for macro-defect-free samples. In addition, process optimization remains a time-consuming problem, with the traditional ‘trial and error’ method demanding considerable time and economic costs. The development of a simple and efficient method to predict the processing window for alloys without internal macro-defects is a key issue. In recent years, machine learning techniques have increasingly been used in the field of additive manufacturing and materials development [[34], [35], [36], [37]]. Aoyagi et al. [38] recently proposed a novel and efficient method based on a support vector machine (SVM) to optimize the two-dimensional process parameters (current and scan speed) and obtain PBF-EB-processed CoCr alloys without internal macro-defects. The method is one of the potential approaches toward effective optimization of more than two process parameters and makes it possible for the machine learning techniques to accelerate the development of alloys without internal macro-defects.

Herein, we focus on the elimination of internal macro-defects, such as pores, lack of fusion, etc., caused by raw powders and printing parameters. The Ti–6Al–4V powders produced by three different methods were compared, and the powder with the best sphericity, flowability, and minimal porosity was selected as the feedstock for subsequent printing. The relationship between the surface roughness and internal macro-defects in the Ti–6Al–4V components was also investigated. The combination of SVM and surface roughness indices (Sdr) predicted a wider four-dimensional processing window for obtaining Ti–6Al–4V alloys without internal macro-defects. Finally, we investigated the tensile properties of Ti–6Al–4V alloys at room temperature with different printing parameters, as well as the corresponding microstructures and fracture types.

Section snippets

Starting materials

Three types of Ti–6Al–4V alloy powders, produced by GA, PA, and PREP, were compared. The particle size distribution of the powders was determined using a laser particle size analyzer (LS230, Beckman Coulter, USA), and the flowability was measured using a Hall flowmeter (JIS-Z2502, Tsutsui Scientific Instruments Co., Ltd., Japan), according to the ASTM B213 standard. The powder morphology and internal macro-defects were determined using scanning electron microscopy (SEM, JEOL JCM-6000) and X-ray 

Comparison of the characteristics of GA, PA, and PREP Ti–6Al–4V powders

The particle size distributions (PSDs) and flowability of the three types of Ti–6Al–4V alloy powders produced by GA, PA, and PREP are shown in Fig. 2. Although the average particle sizes are similar (89.4 μm for GA, 82.5 μm for PA, and 86.1μm for PREP), the particle size range is different for the three types of powder (6.2–174.8 μm for GA, 27.3–139.2 μm for PA, and 39.4–133.9 μm for PREP). The flowability of the GA, PA, and PREP powders was 30.25 ± 0.98, 26.54 ± 0.37, and 25.03 ± 0.22 (s/50

Conclusions

The characteristics of the three types of Ti–6Al–4V alloy powders produced via GA, PA, and PREP were compared. The PREP powder with the best sphericity, flowability, and low porosity was found to be the most favorable powder for subsequent printing of Ti–6Al–4V alloys without internal macro-defects. The quantitative criterion of Sdr <0.015 for even surfaces was also found to be applicable to Ti–6Al–4V alloys. The process maps of Ti–6Al–4V alloys include two regions, high beam current/scan speed 

Uncited references

[55]; [56]; [57]; [58]; [59]; [60]; [61]; [62]; [63]; [64]; [65].

CRediT authorship contribution statement

Yunwei Gui: Writing – original draft, Visualization, Validation, Investigation. Kenta Aoyagi: Writing – review & editing, Supervision, Resources, Methodology, Funding acquisition, Conceptualization. Akihiko Chiba: Supervision, Funding acquisition.

Declaration of competing interest

The authors declare that they have no known competing financial interests or personal relationships that could have appeared to influence the work reported in this paper.

Acknowledgments

This study was based on the results obtained from project JPNP19007, commissioned by the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO). This work was also supported by JSPS KAKENHI (Proposal No. 21K03801) and the Inter-University Cooperative Research Program (Proposal nos. 18G0418, 19G0411, and 20G0418) of the Cooperative Research and Development Center for Advanced Materials, Institute for Materials Research, Tohoku University. It was also supported by the Council for

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Figure 5: 3D & 2D views of simulated fill sequence of a hollow cylinder at 1000 rpm and 1500 rpm at various time intervals during filling.

Computer Simulation of Centrifugal Casting Process using FLOW-3D

Aneesh Kumar J1, a, K. Krishnakumar1, b and S. Savithri2, c 1 Department of Mechanical Engineering, College of Engineering, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, 2 Computational Modelling& Simulation Division, Process Engineering & Environmental Technology Division CSIR-National Institute for Interdisciplinary Science & Technology
Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India.
a aneesh82kj@gmail.com, b kkk@cet.ac.in, c sivakumarsavi@gmail.com, ssavithri@niist.res.in Key words: Mold filling, centrifugal casting process, computer simulation, FLOW- 3D™

Abstract

원심 주조 공정은 기능적으로 등급이 지정된 재료, 즉 구성 요소 간에 밀도 차이가 큰 복합 재료 또는 금속 재료를 생산하는 데 사용되는 잠재적인 제조 기술 중 하나입니다. 이 공정에서 유체 흐름이 중요한 역할을 하며 복잡한 흐름 공정을 이해하는 것은 결함 없는 주물을 생산하는 데 필수입니다. 금형이 고속으로 회전하고 금형 벽이 불투명하기 때문에 흐름 패턴을 실시간으로 시각화하는 것은 불가능합니다. 따라서 현재 연구에서는 상용 CFD 코드 FLOW-3D™를 사용하여 수직 원심 주조 공정 중 단순 중공 원통형 주조에 대한 금형 충전 시퀀스를 시뮬레이션했습니다. 수직 원심주조 공정 중 다양한 방사 속도가 충전 패턴에 미치는 영향을 조사하고 있습니다.

Centrifugal casting process is one of the potential manufacturing techniques used for producing functionally graded materials viz., composite materials or metallic materials which have high differences of density among constituents. In this process, the fluid flow plays a major role and understanding the complex flow process is a must for the production of defect-free castings. Since the mold spins at a high velocity and the mold wall being opaque, it is impossible to visualise the flow patterns in real time. Hence, in the present work, the commercial CFD code FLOW-3D™, has been used to simulate the mold filling sequence for a simple hollow cylindrical casting during vertical centrifugal casting process. Effect of various spinning velocities on the fill pattern during vertical centrifugal casting process is being investigated.

Figure 1: (a) Mold geometry and (b) Computational mesh
Figure 1: (a) Mold geometry and (b) Computational mesh
Figure 2: Experimental data on height of
vertex formed [8]  / Figure 3: Vertex height as a function of time
Figure 2: Experimental data on height of vertex formed [8]/Figure 3: Vertex height as a function of time
Figure 4: Free surface contours for water model at 10 s, 15 s and 20 s.
Figure 4: Free surface contours for water model at 10 s, 15 s and 20 s.
Figure 5: 3D & 2D views of simulated fill sequence of a hollow cylinder at 1000 rpm and 1500 rpm at various time intervals during filling.
Figure 5: 3D & 2D views of simulated fill sequence of a hollow cylinder at 1000 rpm and 1500 rpm at various time intervals during filling.

References

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이종 금속 인터커넥트의 펄스 레이저 용접을 위한 가공 매개변수 최적화

Optimization of processing parameters for pulsed laser welding of dissimilar metal interconnects

본 논문은 독자의 편의를 위해 기계번역된 내용이어서 자세한 내용은 원문을 참고하시기 바랍니다.

NguyenThi TienaYu-LungLoabM.Mohsin RazaaCheng-YenChencChi-PinChiuc

aNational Cheng Kung University, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Tainan, Taiwan

bNational Cheng Kung University, Academy of Innovative Semiconductor and Sustainable Manufacturing, Tainan, Taiwan

cJum-bo Co., Ltd, Xinshi District, Tainan, Taiwan

Abstract

워블 전략이 포함된 펄스 레이저 용접(PLW) 방법을 사용하여 알루미늄 및 구리 이종 랩 조인트의 제조를 위한 최적의 가공 매개변수에 대해 실험 및 수치 조사가 수행됩니다. 피크 레이저 출력과 접선 용접 속도의 대표적인 조합 43개를 선택하기 위해 원형 패킹 설계 알고리즘이 먼저 사용됩니다.

선택한 매개변수는 PLW 프로세스의 전산유체역학(CFD) 모델에 제공되어 용융 풀 형상(즉, 인터페이스 폭 및 침투 깊이) 및 구리 농도를 예측합니다. 시뮬레이션 결과는 설계 공간 내에서 PLW 매개변수의 모든 조합에 대한 용융 풀 형상 및 구리 농도를 예측하기 위해 3개의 대리 모델을 교육하는 데 사용됩니다.

마지막으로, 대체 모델을 사용하여 구성된 처리 맵은 용융 영역에 균열이나 기공이 없고 향상된 기계적 및 전기적 특성이 있는 이종 조인트를 생성하는 PLW 매개변수를 결정하기 위해 세 가지 품질 기준에 따라 필터링됩니다.

제안된 최적화 접근법의 타당성은 최적의 용접 매개변수를 사용하여 생성된 실험 샘플의 전단 강도, 금속간 화합물(IMC) 형성 및 전기 접촉 저항을 평가하여 입증됩니다.

결과는 최적의 매개변수가 1209N의 높은 전단 강도와 86µΩ의 낮은 전기 접촉 저항을 생성함을 확인합니다. 또한 용융 영역에는 균열 및 기공과 같은 결함이 없습니다.

An experimental and numerical investigation is performed into the optimal processing parameters for the fabrication of aluminum and copper dissimilar lap joints using a pulsed laser welding (PLW) method with a wobble strategy. A circle packing design algorithm is first employed to select 43 representative combinations of the peak laser power and tangential welding speed. The selected parameters are then supplied to a computational fluidic dynamics (CFD) model of the PLW process to predict the melt pool geometry (i.e., interface width and penetration depth) and copper concentration. The simulation results are used to train three surrogate models to predict the melt pool geometry and copper concentration for any combination of the PLW parameters within the design space. Finally, the processing maps constructed using the surrogate models are filtered in accordance with three quality criteria to determine the PLW parameters that produce dissimilar joints with no cracks or pores in the fusion zone and enhanced mechanical and electrical properties. The validity of the proposed optimization approach is demonstrated by evaluating the shear strength, intermetallic compound (IMC) formation, and electrical contact resistance of experimental samples produced using the optimal welding parameters. The results confirm that the optimal parameters yield a high shear strength of 1209 N and a low electrical contact resistance of 86 µΩ. Moreover, the fusion zone is free of defects, such as cracks and pores.

Fig. 1. Schematic illustration of Al-Cu lap-joint arrangement
Fig. 1. Schematic illustration of Al-Cu lap-joint arrangement
Fig. 2. Machine setup (MFQS-150W_1500W
Fig. 2. Machine setup (MFQS-150W_1500W
Fig. 5. Lap-shear mechanical tests: (a) experimental setup and specimen dimensions, and (b) two different failures of lap-joint welding.
N. Thi Tien et al.
Fig. 5. Lap-shear mechanical tests: (a) experimental setup and specimen dimensions, and (b) two different failures of lap-joint welding. N. Thi Tien et al.
Fig. 9. Simulation and experimental results for melt pool profile. (a) Simulation results for melt pool cross-section, and (b) OM image of melt pool cross-section.
(Note that laser processing parameter of 830 W and 565 mm/s is chosen.).
Fig. 9. Simulation and experimental results for melt pool profile. (a) Simulation results for melt pool cross-section, and (b) OM image of melt pool cross-section. (Note that laser processing parameter of 830 W and 565 mm/s is chosen.).

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Fig. 1. (a) Dimensions of the casting with runners (unit: mm), (b) a melt flow simulation using Flow-3D software together with Reilly's model[44], predicted that a large amount of bifilms (denoted by the black particles) would be contained in the final casting. (c) A solidification simulation using Pro-cast software showed that no shrinkage defect was contained in the final casting.

AZ91 합금 주물 내 연행 결함에 대한 캐리어 가스의 영향

TianLiabJ.M.T.DaviesaXiangzhenZhuc
aUniversity of Birmingham, Birmingham B15 2TT, United Kingdom
bGrainger and Worrall Ltd, Bridgnorth WV15 5HP, United Kingdom
cBrunel Centre for Advanced Solidification Technology, Brunel University London, Kingston Ln, London, Uxbridge UB8 3PH, United Kingdom

Abstract

An entrainment defect (also known as a double oxide film defect or bifilm) acts a void containing an entrapped gas when submerged into a light-alloy melt, thus reducing the quality and reproducibility of the final castings. Previous publications, carried out with Al-alloy castings, reported that this trapped gas could be subsequently consumed by the reaction with the surrounding melt, thus reducing the void volume and negative effect of entrainment defects. Compared with Al-alloys, the entrapped gas within Mg-alloy might be more efficiently consumed due to the relatively high reactivity of magnesium. However, research into the entrainment defects within Mg alloys has been significantly limited. In the present work, AZ91 alloy castings were produced under different carrier gas atmospheres (i.e., SF6/CO2, SF6/air). The evolution processes of the entrainment defects contained in AZ91 alloy were suggested according to the microstructure inspections and thermodynamic calculations. The defects formed in the different atmospheres have a similar sandwich-like structure, but their oxide films contained different combinations of compounds. The use of carrier gases, which were associated with different entrained-gas consumption rates, affected the reproducibility of AZ91 castings.

연행 결함(이중 산화막 결함 또는 이중막이라고도 함)은 경합금 용융물에 잠길 때 갇힌 가스를 포함하는 공극으로 작용하여 최종 주물의 품질과 재현성을 저하시킵니다. Al-합금 주물을 사용하여 수행된 이전 간행물에서는 이 갇힌 가스가 주변 용융물과의 반응에 의해 후속적으로 소모되어 공극 부피와 연행 결함의 부정적인 영향을 줄일 수 있다고 보고했습니다. Al-합금에 비해 마그네슘의 상대적으로 높은 반응성으로 인해 Mg-합금 내에 포집된 가스가 더 효율적으로 소모될 수 있습니다. 그러나 Mg 합금 내 연행 결함에 대한 연구는 상당히 제한적이었습니다. 현재 작업에서 AZ91 합금 주물은 다양한 캐리어 가스 분위기(즉, SF6/CO2, SF6/공기)에서 생산되었습니다. AZ91 합금에 포함된 연행 결함의 진화 과정은 미세 조직 검사 및 열역학 계산에 따라 제안되었습니다. 서로 다른 분위기에서 형성된 결함은 유사한 샌드위치 구조를 갖지만 산화막에는 서로 다른 화합물 조합이 포함되어 있습니다. 다른 동반 가스 소비율과 관련된 운반 가스의 사용은 AZ91 주물의 재현성에 영향을 미쳤습니다.

Keywords

Magnesium alloy, Casting, Oxide film, Bifilm, Entrainment defect, Reproducibility

1. Introduction

As the lightest structural metal available on Earth, magnesium became one of the most attractive light metals over the last few decades. The magnesium industry has consequently experienced a rapid development in the last 20 years [1,2], indicating a large growth in demand for Mg alloys all over the world. Nowadays, the use of Mg alloys can be found in the fields of automobiles, aerospace, electronics and etc.[3,4]. It has been predicted that the global consumption of Mg metals will further increase in the future, especially in the automotive industry, as the energy efficiency requirement of both traditional and electric vehicles further push manufactures lightweight their design [3,5,6].

The sustained growth in demand for Mg alloys motivated a wide interest in the improvement of the quality and mechanical properties of Mg-alloy castings. During a Mg-alloy casting process, surface turbulence of the melt can lead to the entrapment of a doubled-over surface film containing a small quantity of the surrounding atmosphere, thus forming an entrainment defect (also known as a double oxide film defect or bifilm) [7][8][9][10]. The random size, quantity, orientation, and placement of entrainment defects are widely accepted to be significant factors linked to the variation of casting properties [7]. In addition, Peng et al. [11] found that entrained oxides films in AZ91 alloy melt acted as filters to Al8Mn5 particles, trapping them as they settle. Mackie et al. [12] further suggested that entrained oxide films can act to trawl the intermetallic particles, causing them to cluster and form extremely large defects. The clustering of intermetallic compounds made the entrainment defects more detrimental for the casting properties.

Most of the previous studies regarding entrainment defects were carried out on Al-alloys [7,[13][14][15][16][17][18], and a few potential methods have been suggested for diminishing their negative effect on the quality of Al-alloy castings. Nyahumwa et al.,[16] shows that the void volume within entrainment defects could be reduced by a hot isostatic pressing (HIP) process. Campbell [7] suggested the entrained gas within the defects could be consumed due to reaction with the surrounding melt, which was further verified by Raiszedeh and Griffiths [19].The effect of the entrained gas consumption on the mechanical properties of Al-alloy castings has been investigated by [8,9], suggesting that the consumption of the entrained gas promoted the improvement of the casting reproducibility.

Compared with the investigation concerning the defects within Al-alloys, research into the entrainment defects within Mg-alloys has been significantly limited. The existence of entrainment defects has been demonstrated in Mg-alloy castings [20,21], but their behaviour, evolution, as well as entrained gas consumption are still not clear.

In a Mg-alloy casting process, the melt is usually protected by a cover gas to avoid magnesium ignition. The cavities of sand or investment moulds are accordingly required to be flushed with the cover gas prior to the melt pouring [22]. Therefore, the entrained gas within Mg-alloy castings should contain the cover gas used in the casting process, rather than air only, which may complicate the structure and evolution of the corresponding entrainment defects.

SF6 is a typical cover gas widely used for Mg-alloy casting processes [23][24][25]. Although this cover gas has been restricted to use in European Mg-alloy foundries, a commercial report has pointed out that this cover is still popular in global Mg-alloy industry, especially in the countries which dominated the global Mg-alloy production, such as China, Brazil, India, etc. [26]. In addition, a survey in academic publications also showed that this cover gas was widely used in recent Mg-alloy studies [27]. The protective mechanism of SF6 cover gas (i.e., the reaction between liquid Mg-alloy and SF6 cover gas) has been investigated by several previous researchers, but the formation process of the surface oxide film is still not clearly understood, and even some published results are conflicting with each other. In early 1970s, Fruehling [28] found that the surface film formed under SF6 was MgO mainly with traces of fluorides, and suggested that SF6 was absorbed in the Mg-alloy surface film. Couling [29] further noticed that the absorbed SF6 reacted with the Mg-alloy melt to form MgF2. In last 20 years, different structures of the Mg-alloy surface films have been reported, as detailed below.(1)

Single-layered film. Cashion [30,31] used X-ray Photoelectron Spectroscopy (XPS) and Auger Spectroscopy (AES) to identify the surface film as MgO and MgF2. He also found that composition of the film was constant throughout the thickness and the whole experimental holding time. The film observed by Cashion had a single-layered structure created from a holding time from 10 min to 100 min.(2)

Double-layered film. Aarstad et. al [32] reported a doubled-layered surface oxide film in 2003. They observed several well-distributed MgF2 particles attached to the preliminary MgO film and grew until they covered 25–50% of the total surface area. The inward diffusion of F through the outer MgO film was the driving force for the evolution process. This double-layered structure was also supported by Xiong’s group [25,33] and Shih et al. [34].(3)

Triple-layered film. The triple-layered film and its evolution process were reported in 2002 by Pettersen [35]. Pettersen found that the initial surface film was a MgO phase and then gradually evolved to the stable MgF2 phase by the inward diffusion of F. In the final stage, the film has a triple-layered structure with a thin O-rich interlayer between the thick top and bottom MgF2 layers.(4)

Oxide film consisted of discrete particles. Wang et al [36] stirred the Mg-alloy surface film into the melt under a SF6 cover gas, and then inspect the entrained surface film after the solidification. They found that the entrained surface films were not continues as the protective surface films reported by other researchers but composed of discrete particles. The young oxide film was composed of MgO nano-sized oxide particles, while the old oxide films consist of coarse particles (about 1  µm in average size) on one side that contained fluorides and nitrides.

The oxide films of a Mg-alloy melt surface or an entrained gas are both formed due to the reaction between liquid Mg-alloy and the cover gas, thus the above-mentioned research regarding the Mg-alloy surface film gives valuable insights into the evolution of entrainment defects. The protective mechanism of SF6 cover gas (i.e., formation of a Mg-alloy surface film) therefore indicated a potential complicated evolution process of the corresponding entrainment defects.

However, it should be noted that the formation of a surface film on a Mg-alloy melt is in a different situation to the consumption of an entrained gas that is submerged into the melt. For example, a sufficient amount of cover gas was supported during the surface film formation in the studies previously mentioned, which suppressed the depletion of the cover gas. In contrast, the amount of entrained gas within a Mg-alloy melt is finite, and the entrained gas may become fully depleted. Mirak [37] introduced 3.5%SF6/air bubbles into a pure Mg-alloy melt solidifying in a specially designed permanent mould. It was found that the gas bubbles were entirely consumed, and the corresponding oxide film was a mixture of MgO and MgF2. However, the nucleation sites (such as the MgF2 spots observed by Aarstad [32] and Xiong [25,33]) were not observed. Mirak also speculated that the MgF2 formed prior to MgO in the oxide film based on the composition analysis, which was opposite to the surface film formation process reported in previous literatures (i.e., MgO formed prior to MgF2). Mirak’s work indicated that the oxide-film formation of an entrained gas may be quite different from that of surface films, but he did not reveal the structure and evolution of the oxide films.

In addition, the use of carrier gas in the cover gases also influenced the reaction between the cover gas and the liquid Mg-alloy. SF6/air required a higher content of SF6 than did a SF6/CO2 carrier gas [38], to avoid the ignition of molten magnesium, revealing different gas-consumption rates. Liang et.al [39] suggested that carbon was formed in the surface film when CO2 was used as a carrier gas, which was different from the films formed in SF6/air. An investigation into Mg combustion [40] reported a detection of Mg2C3 in the Mg-alloy sample after burning in CO2, which not only supported Liang’s results, but also indicated a potential formation of Mg carbides in double oxide film defects.

The work reported here is an investigation into the behaviour and evolution of entrainment defects formed in AZ91 Mg-alloy castings, protected by different cover gases (i.e., SF6/air and SF6/CO2). These carrier gases have different protectability for liquid Mg alloy, which may be therefore associated with different consumption rates and evolution processes of the corresponding entrained gases. The effect of the entrained-gas consumption on the reproducibility of AZ91 castings was also studied.

2. Experiment

2.1. Melting and casting

Three kilograms AZ91 alloy was melted in a mild steel crucible at 700 ± 5 °C. The composition of the AZ91 alloy has been shown in Table 1. Prior to heating, all oxide scale on the ingot surface was removed by machining. The cover gases used were 0.5%SF6/air or 0.5%SF6/CO2 (vol.%) at a flow rate of 6 L/min for different castings. The melt was degassed by argon with a flow rate of 0.3 L/min for 15 min [41,42], and then poured into sand moulds. Prior to pouring, the sand mould cavity was flushed with the cover gas for 20 min [22]. The residual melt (around 1 kg) was solidified in the crucible.

Table 1. Composition (wt.%) of the AZ91 alloy used in this study.

AlZnMnSiFeNiMg
9.40.610.150.020.0050.0017Residual

Fig. 1(a) shows the dimensions of the casting with runners. A top-filling system was deliberately used to generate entrainment defects in the final castings. Green and Campbell [7,43] suggested that a top-filling system caused more entrainment events (i.e., bifilms) during a casting process, compared with a bottom-filling system. A melt flow simulation (Flow-3D software) of this mould, using Reilly’s model [44] regarding the entrainment events, also predicted that a large amount of bifilms would be contained in the final casting (denoted by the black particles in Fig. 1b).

Fig. 1. (a) Dimensions of the casting with runners (unit: mm), (b) a melt flow simulation using Flow-3D software together with Reilly's model[44], predicted that a large amount of bifilms (denoted by the black particles) would be contained in the final casting. (c) A solidification simulation using Pro-cast software showed that no shrinkage defect was contained in the final casting.

Shrinkage defects also affect the mechanical properties and reproducibility of castings. Since this study focused on the effect of bifilms on the casting quality, the mould has been deliberately designed to avoid generating shrinkage defects. A solidification simulation using ProCAST software showed that no shrinkage defect would be contained in the final casting, as shown in Fig. 1c. The casting soundness has also been confirmed using a real time X-ray prior to the test bar machining.

The sand moulds were made from resin-bonded silica sand, containing 1wt. % PEPSET 5230 resin and 1wt. % PEPSET 5112 catalyst. The sand also contained 2 wt.% Na2SiF6 to act as an inhibitor [45]. The pouring temperature was 700 ± 5 °C. After the solidification, a section of the runner bars was sent to the Sci-Lab Analytical Ltd for a H-content analysis (LECO analysis), and all the H-content measurements were carried out on the 5th day after the casting process. Each of the castings was machined into 40 test bars for a tensile strength test, using a Zwick 1484 tensile test machine with a clip extensometer. The fracture surfaces of the broken test bars were examined using Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM, Philips JEOL7000) with an accelerating voltage of 5–15 kV. The fractured test bars, residual Mg-alloy solidified in the crucible, and the casting runners were then sectioned, polished and also inspected using the same SEM. The cross-section of the oxide film found on the test-bar fracture surface was exposed by the Focused Ion Beam milling technique (FIB), using a CFEI Quanta 3D FEG FIB-SEM. The oxide film required to be analysed was coated with a platinum layer. Then, a gallium ion beam, accelerated to 30 kV, milled the material substrate surrounding the platinum coated area to expose the cross section of the oxide film. EDS analysis of the oxide film’s cross section was carried out using the FIB equipment at accelerating voltage of 30 kV.

2.2. Oxidation cell

As previously mentioned, several past researchers investigated the protective film formed on a Mg-alloy melt surface [38,39,[46][47][48][49][50][51][52]. During these experiments, the amount of cover gas used was sufficient, thus suppressing the depletion of fluorides in the cover gas. The experiment described in this section used a sealed oxidation cell, which limited the supply of cover gas, to study the evolution of the oxide films of entrainment defects. The cover gas contained in the oxidation cell was regarded as large-size “entrained bubble”.

As shown in Fig. 2, the main body of the oxidation cell was a closed-end mild steel tube which had an inner length of 400 mm, and an inner diameter of 32 mm. A water-cooled copper tube was wrapped around the upper section of the cell. When the tube was heated, the cooling system created a temperature difference between the upper and lower sections, causing the interior gas to convect within the tube. The temperature was monitored by a type-K thermocouple located at the top of the crucible. Nie et al. [53] suggested that the SF6 cover gas would react with the steel wall of the holding furnace when they investigated the surface film of a Mg-alloy melt. To avoid this reaction, the interior surface of the steel oxidation cell (shown in Fig. 2) and the upper half section of the thermocouple were coated with boron nitride (the Mg-alloy was not in contact with boron nitride).

Fig. 2. Schematic of the oxidation cell used to study the evolution of the oxide films of the entrainment defects (unit mm).

During the experiment, a block of solid AZ91 alloy was placed in a magnesia crucible located at the bottom of the oxidation cell. The cell was heated to 100 °C in an electric resistance furnace under a gas flow rate of 1 L/min. The cell was held at this temperature for 20 min, to replace the original trapped atmosphere (i.e. air). Then, the oxidation cell was further heated to 700 °C, melting the AZ91 sample. The gas inlet and exit valves were then closed, creating a sealed environment for oxidation under a limited supply of cover gas. The oxidation cell was then held at 700 ± 10 °C for periods of time from 5 min to 30 min in 5-min intervals. At the end of each holding time, the cell was quenched in water. After cooling to room temperature, the oxidised sample was sectioned, polished, and subsequently examined by SEM.

3. Results

3.1. Structure and composition of the entrainment defects formed in SF6/air

The structure and composition of the entrainment defect formed in the AZ91 castings under a cover gas of 0.5%SF6/air was observed by SEM and EDS. The results indicate that there exist two types of entrainment defects which are sketched in Fig. 3: (1) Type A defect whose oxide film has a traditional single-layered structure and (2) Type B defect, whose oxide film has two layers. The details of these defects were introduced in the following. Here it should be noticed that, as the entrainment defects are also known as biofilms or double oxide film, the oxide films of Type B defect were referred to as “multi-layered oxide film” or “multi-layered structure” in the present work to avoid a confusing description such as “the double-layered oxide film of a double oxide film defect”.

Fig. 3. Schematic of the different types of entrainment defects found in AZ91 castings. (a) Type A defect with a single-layered oxide film and (b) Type B defect with two-layered oxide film.

Fig. 4(a-b) shows a Type A defect having a compact single-layered oxide film with about 0.4 µm thickness. Oxygen, fluorine, magnesium and aluminium were detected in this film (Fig. 4c). It is speculated that oxide film is the mixture of fluoride and oxide of magnesium and aluminium. The detection of fluorine revealed that an entrained cover gas was contained in the formation of this defect. That is to say that the pores shown in Fig. 4(a) were not shrinkage defects or hydrogen porosity, but entrainment defects. The detection of aluminium was different with Xiong and Wang’s previous study [47,48], which showed that no aluminium was contained in their surface film of an AZ91 melt protected by a SF6 cover gas. Sulphur could not be clearly recognized in the element map, but there was a S-peak in the corresponding ESD spectrum.

Fig. 4. (a) A Type A entrainment defect formed in SF6/air and having a single-layered oxide film, (b) the oxide film of this defect, (c) SEM-EDS element maps (using Philips JEOL7000) corresponding to the area highlighted in (b).

Fig. 5(a-b) shows a Type B entrainment defect having a multi-layered oxide film. The compact outer layers of the oxide films were enriched with fluorine and oxygen (Fig. 5c), while their relatively porous inner layers were only enriched with oxygen (i.e., poor in fluorine) and partly grew together, thus forming a sandwich-like structure. Therefore, it is speculated that the outer layer is the mixture of fluoride and oxide, while the inner layer is mainly oxide. Sulphur could only be recognized in the EDX spectrum and could not be clearly identified in the element map, which might be due to the small S-content in the cover gas (i.e., 0.5% volume content of SF6 in the cover gas). In this oxide film, aluminium was contained in the outer layer of this oxide film but could not be clearly detected in the inner layer. Moreover, the distribution of Al seems to be uneven. It can be found that, in the right side of the defect, aluminium exists in the film but its concentration can not be identified to be higher than the matrix. However, there is a small area with much higher aluminium concentration in the left side of the defect. Such an uneven distribution of aluminium was also observed in other defects (shown in the following), and it is the result of the formation of some oxide particles in or under the film.

Fig. 5. (a) A Type B entrainment defect formed in SF6/air and having a multi-layered oxide film, (b) the oxide films of this defect have grown together, (c) SEM-EDS element maps (using Philips JEOL7000) corresponding to the area shown in (b).

Figs. 4 and 5 show cross sectional observations of the entrainment defects formed in the AZ91 alloy sample cast under a cover gas of SF6/air. It is not sufficient to characterize the entrainment defects only by the figures observed from the two-dimensional section. To have a further understanding, the surface of the entrainment defects (i.e. the oxide film) was further studied by observing the fracture surface of the test bars.

Fig. 6(a) shows fracture surfaces of an AZ91 alloy tensile test bar produced in SF6/air. Symmetrical dark regions can be seen on both sides of the fracture surfaces. Fig. 6(b) shows boundaries between the dark and bright regions. The bright region consisted of jagged and broken features, while the surface of the dark region was relatively smooth and flat. In addition, the EDS results (Fig. 6c-d and Table 2) show that fluorine, oxygen, sulphur, and nitrogen were only detected in the dark regions, indicating that the dark regions were surface protective films entrained into the melt. Therefore, it could be suggested that the dark regions were an entrainment defect with consideration of their symmetrical nature. Similar defects on fracture surfaces of Al-alloy castings have been previously reported [7]Nitrides were only found in the oxide films on the test-bar fracture surfaces but never detected in the cross-sectional samples shown in Figs. 4 and 5. An underlying reason is that the nitrides contained in these samples may have hydrolysed during the sample polishing process [54].

Fig. 6. (a) A pair of the fracture surfaces of a AZ91 alloy tensile test bar produced under a cover gas of SF6/air. The dimension of the fracture surface is 5 mm × 6 mm, (b) a section of the boundary between the dark and bright regions shown in (a), (c-d) EDS spectrum of the (c) bright regions and (d) dark regions, (e) schematic of an entrainment defect contained in a test bar.

Table 2. EDS results (wt.%) corresponding to the regions shown in Fig. 6 (cover gas: SF6/air).

Empty CellCOMgFAlZnSN
Dark region in Fig. 6(b)3.481.3279.130.4713.630.570.080.73
Bright region in Fig. 6(b)3.5884.4811.250.68

In conjunction with the cross-sectional observation of the defects shown in Figs. 4 and 5, the structure of an entrainment defect contained in a tensile test bar was sketched as shown in Fig. 6(e). The defect contained an entrained gas enclosed by its oxide film, creating a void section inside the test bar. When the tensile force applied on the defect during the fracture process, the crack was initiated at the void section and propagated along the entrainment defect, since cracks would be propagated along the weakest path [55]. Therefore, when the test bar was finally fractured, the oxide films of entrainment defect appeared on both fracture surfaces of the test bar, as shown in Fig. 6(a).

3.2. Structure and composition of the entrainment defects formed in SF6/CO2

Similar to the entrainment defect formed in SF6/air, the defects formed under a cover gas of 0.5%SF6/CO2 also had two types of oxide films (i.e., single-layered and multi-layered types). Fig. 7(a) shows an example of the entrainment defects containing a multi-layered oxide film. A magnified observation to the defect (Fig. 7b) shows that the inner layers of the oxide films had grown together, presenting a sandwich-like structure, which was similar to the defects formed in an atmosphere of SF6/air (Fig. 5b). An EDS spectrum (Fig. 7c) revealed that the joint area (inner layer) of this sandwich-like structure mainly contained magnesium oxides. Peaks of fluorine, sulphur, and aluminium were recognized in this EDS spectrum, but their amount was relatively small. In contrast, the outer layers of the oxide films were compact and composed of a mixture of fluorides and oxides (Fig. 7d-e).

Fig. 7. (a) An example of entrainment defects formed in SF6/CO2 and having a multi-layered oxide film, (b) magnified observation of the defect, showing the inner layer of the oxide films has grown together, (c) EDS spectrum of the point denoted in (b), (d) outer layer of the oxide film, (e) SEM-EDS element maps (using Philips JEOL7000) corresponding to the area shown in (d).

Fig. 8(a) shows an entrainment defect on the fracture surfaces of an AZ91 alloy tensile test bar, which was produced in an atmosphere of 0.5%SF6/CO2. The corresponding EDS results (Table 3) showed that oxide film contained fluorides and oxides. Sulphur and nitrogen were not detected. Besides, a magnified observation (Fig. 8b) indicated spots on the oxide film surface. The diameter of the spots ranged from hundreds of nanometres to a few micron meters.

Fig. 8. (a) A pair of the fracture surfaces of a AZ91 alloy tensile test bar, produced in an atmosphere of SF6/CO2. The dimension of the fracture surface is 5 mm × 6 mm, (b) surface appearance of the oxide films on the fracture surfaces, showing spots on the film surface.

To further reveal the structure and composition of the oxide film clearly, the cross-section of the oxide film on a test-bar fracture surface was onsite exposed using the FIB technique (Fig. 9). As shown in Fig. 9a, a continuous oxide film was found between the platinum coating layer and the Mg-Al alloy substrate. Fig. 9 (b-c) shows a magnified observation to oxide films, indicating a multi-layered structure (denoted by the red box in Fig. 9c). The bottom layer was enriched with fluorine and oxygen and should be the mixture of fluoride and oxide, which was similar to the “outer layer” shown in Figs. 5 and 7, while the only-oxygen-enriched top layer was similar to the “inner layer” shown in Figs. 5 and 7.

Fig. 9. (a) A cross-sectional observation of the oxide film on the fracture surface of the AZ91 casting produced in SF6/CO2, exposed by FIB, (b) a magnified observation of area highlighted in (a), and (c) SEM-EDS elements map of the area shown in (b), obtained by CFEI Quanta 3D FEG FIB-SEM.

Except the continuous film, some individual particles were also observed in or below the continuous film, as shown in Fig. 9. An Al-enriched particle was detected in the left side of the oxide film shown in Fig. 9b and might be speculated to be spinel Mg2AlO4 because it also contains abundant magnesium and oxygen elements. The existing of such Mg2AlO4 particles is responsible for the high concentration of aluminium in small areas of the observed film and the uneven distribution of aluminium, as shown in Fig. 5(c). Here it should be emphasized that, although the other part of the bottom layer of the continuous oxide film contains less aluminium than this Al-enriched particle, the Fig. 9c indicated that the amount of aluminium in this bottom layer was still non-negligible, especially when comparing with the outer layer of the film. Below the right side of the oxide film shown in Fig. 9b, a particle was detected and speculated to be MgO because it is rich in Mg and O. According to Wang’s result [56], lots of discrete MgO particles can be formed on the surface of the Mg melt by the oxidation of Mg melt and Mg vapor. The MgO particles observed in our present work may be formed due to the same reasons. While, due to the differences in experimental conditions, less Mg melt can be vapored or react with O2, thus only a few of MgO particles formed in our work. An enrichment of carbon was also found in the film, revealing that CO2 was able to react with the melt, thus forming carbon or carbides. This carbon concentration was consistent with the relatively high carbon content of the oxide film shown in Table 3 (i.e., the dark region). In the area next to the oxide film.

Table 3. EDS results (wt.%) corresponding to the regions shown in Fig. 8 (cover gas: SF6/ CO2).

Empty CellCOMgFAlZnSN
Dark region in Fig. 8(a)7.253.6469.823.827.030.86
Bright region in Fig. 8(a)2.100.4482.8313.261.36

This cross-sectional observation of the oxide film on a test bar fracture surface (Fig. 9) further verified the schematic of the entrainment defect shown in Fig. 6(e). The entrainment defects formed in different atmospheres of SF6/CO2 and SF6/air had similar structures, but their compositions were different.

3.3. Evolution of the oxide films in the oxidation cell

The results in Section 3.1 and 3.2 have shown the structures and compositions of entrainment defects formed in AZ91 castings under cover gases of SF6/air and SF6/CO2. Different stages of the oxidation reaction may lead to the different structures and compositions of entrainment defects. Although Campbell has conjectured that an entrained gas may react with the surrounding melt, it is rarely reported that the reaction occurring between the Mg-alloy melt and entrapped cover gas. Previous researchers normally focus on the reaction between a Mg-alloy melt and the cover gas in an open environment [38,39,[46][47][48][49][50][51][52], which was different from the situation of a cover gas trapped into the melt. To further understand the formation of the entrainment defect in an AZ91 alloy, the evolution process of oxide films of the entrainment defect was further studied using an oxidation cell.

Fig. 10 (a and d) shows a surface film held for 5 min in the oxidation cell, protected by 0.5%SF6/air. There was only one single layer consisting of fluoride and oxide (MgF2 and MgO). In this surface film. Sulphur was detected in the EDS spectrum, but its amount was too small to be recognized in the element map. The structure and composition of this oxide film was similar to the single-layered films of entrainment defects shown in Fig. 4.

Fig. 10. Oxide films formed in the oxidation cell under a cover gas of 0.5%SF6/air and held at 700 °C for (a) 5 min; (b) 10 min; (c) 30 min, and (d-f) the SEM-EDS element maps (using Philips JEOL7000) corresponding to the oxide film shown in (a-c) respectively, (d) 5 min; (e) 10 min; (f) 30 min. The red points in (c and f) are the location references, denoting the boundary of the F-enriched layer in different element maps.

After a holding time of 10 min, a thin (O, S)-enriched top layer (around 700 nm) appeared upon the preliminary F-enriched film, forming a multi-layered structure, as shown in Fig. 10(b and e). The thickness of the (O, S)-enriched top layer increased with increased holding time. As shown in Fig. 10(c and f), the oxide film held for 30 min also had a multi-layered structure, but the thickness of its (O, S)-enriched top layer (around 2.5 µm) was higher than the that of the 10-min oxide film. The multi-layered oxide films shown in Fig. 10(b-c) presented a similar appearance to the films of the sandwich-like defect shown in Fig. 5.

The different structures of the oxide films shown in Fig. 10 indicated that fluorides in the cover gas would be preferentially consumed due to the reaction with the AZ91 alloy melt. After the depletion of fluorides, the residual cover gas reacted further with the liquid AZ91 alloy, forming the top (O, S)-enriched layer in the oxide film. Therefore, the different structures and compositions of entrainment defects shown in Figs. 4 and 5 may be due to an ongoing oxidation reaction between melt and entrapped cover gas.

This multi-layered structure has not been reported in previous publications concerning the protective surface film formed on a Mg-alloy melt [38,[46][47][48][49][50][51]. This may be due to the fact that previous researchers carried out their experiments with an un-limited amount of cover gas, creating a situation where the fluorides in the cover gas were not able to become depleted. Therefore, the oxide film of an entrainment defect had behaviour traits similar to the oxide films shown in Fig. 10, but different from the oxide films formed on the Mg-alloy melt surface reported in [38,[46][47][48][49][50][51].

Similar with the oxide films held in SF6/air, the oxide films formed in SF6/CO2 also had different structures with different holding times in the oxidation cell. Fig. 11(a) shows an oxide film, held on an AZ91 melt surface under a cover gas of 0.5%SF6/CO2 for 5 min. This film had a single-layered structure consisting of MgF2. The existence of MgO could not be confirmed in this film. After the holding time of 30 min, the film had a multi-layered structure; the inner layer was of a compact and uniform appearance and composed of MgF2, while the outer layer is the mixture of MgF2 and MgO. Sulphur was not detected in this film, which was different from the surface film formed in 0.5%SF6/air. Therefore, fluorides in the cover gas of 0.5%SF6/CO2 were also preferentially consumed at an early stage of the film growth process. Compared with the film formed in SF6/air, the MgO in film formed in SF6/CO2 appeared later and sulphide did not appear within 30 min. It may mean that the formation and evolution of film in SF6/air is faster than SF6/CO2. CO2 may have subsequently reacted with the melt to form MgO, while sulphur-containing compounds accumulated in the cover gas and reacted to form sulphide in very late stage (may after 30 min in oxidation cell).

Fig. 11. Oxide films formed in the oxidation cell under a cover gas of 0.5%SF6/CO2, and their SEM-EDS element maps (using Philips JEOL7000). They were held at 700 °C for (a) 5 min; (b) 30 min. The red points in (b) are the location references, denoting the boundary between the top and bottom layers in the oxide film.

4. Discussion

4.1. Evolution of entrainment defects formed in SF6/air

HSC software from Outokumpu HSC Chemistry for Windows (http://www.hsc-chemistry.net/) was used to carry out thermodynamic calculations needed to explore the reactions which might occur between the trapped gases and liquid AZ91 alloy. The solutions to the calculations suggest which products are most likely to form in the reaction process between a small amount of cover gas (i.e., the amount within a trapped bubble) and the AZ91-alloy melt.

In the trials, the pressure was set to 1 atm, and the temperature set to 700 °C. The amount of the cover gas was assumed to be 7 × 10−7 kg, with a volume of approximately 0.57 cm3 (3.14 × 10−8 kmol) for 0.5%SF6/air, and 0.35 cm3 (3.12 × 10−8 kmol) for 0.5%SF6/CO2. The amount of the AZ91 alloy melt in contact with the trapped gas was assumed to be sufficient to complete all reactions. The decomposition products of SF6 were SF5, SF4, SF3, SF2, F2, S(g), S2(g) and F(g) [57][58][59][60].

Fig. 12 shows the equilibrium diagram of the thermodynamic calculation of the reaction between the AZ91 alloy and 0.5%SF6/air. In the diagram, the reactants and products with less than 10−15 kmol have not been shown, as this was 5 orders of magnitude less than the amount of SF6 present (≈ 1.57 × 10−10 kmol) and therefore would not affect the observed process in a practical way.

Fig. 12. An equilibrium diagram for the reaction between 7e-7 kg 0.5%SF6/air and a sufficient amount of AZ91 alloy. The X axis is the amount of AZ91 alloy melt having reacted with the entrained gas, and the vertical Y-axis is the amount of the reactants and products.

This reaction process could be divided into 3 stages.

Stage 1: The formation of fluorides. the AZ91 melt preferentially reacted with SF6 and its decomposition products, producing MgF2, AlF3, and ZnF2. However, the amount of ZnF2 may have been too small to be detected practically (1.25 × 10−12 kmol of ZnF2 compared with 3 × 10−10 kmol of MgF2), which may be the reason why Zn was not detected in any the oxide films shown in Sections 3.13.3. Meanwhile, sulphur accumulated in the residual gas as SO2.

Stage 2: The formation of oxides. After the liquid AZ91 alloy had depleted all the available fluorides in the entrapped gas, the amount of AlF3 and ZnF2 quickly reduced due to a reaction with Mg. O2(g) and SO2 reacted with the AZ91 melt, forming MgO, Al2O3, MgAl2O4, ZnO, ZnSO4 and MgSO4. However, the amount of ZnO and ZnSO4 would have been too small to be found practically by EDS (e.g. 9.5 × 10−12 kmol of ZnO,1.38 × 10−14 kmol of ZnSO4, in contrast to 4.68 × 10−10 kmol of MgF2, when the amount of AZ91 on the X-axis is 2.5 × 10−9 kmol). In the experimental cases, the concentration of F in the cover gas is very low, whole the concentration f O is much higher. Therefore, the stage 1 and 2, i.e, the formation of fluoride and oxide may happen simultaneously at the beginning of the reaction, resulting in the formation of a singer-layered mixture of fluoride and oxide, as shown in Figs. 4 and 10(a). While an inner layer consisted of oxides but fluorides could form after the complete depletion of F element in the cover gas.

Stages 1- 2 theoretically verified the formation process of the multi-layered structure shown in Fig. 10.

The amount of MgAl2O4 and Al2O3 in the oxide film was of a sufficient amount to be detected, which was consistent with the oxide films shown in Fig. 4. However, the existence of aluminium could not be recognized in the oxide films grown in the oxidation cell, as shown in Fig. 10. This absence of Al may be due to the following reactions between the surface film and AZ91 alloy melt:(1)

Al2O3 + 3Mg + = 3MgO + 2Al, △G(700 °C) = -119.82 kJ/mol(2)

Mg + MgAl2O4 = MgO + Al, △G(700 °C) =-106.34 kJ/molwhich could not be simulated by the HSC software since the thermodynamic calculation was carried out under an assumption that the reactants were in full contact with each other. However, in a practical process, the AZ91 melt and the cover gas would not be able to be in contact with each other completely, due to the existence of the protective surface film.

Stage 3: The formation of Sulphide and nitride. After a holding time of 30 min, the gas-phase fluorides and oxides in the oxidation cell had become depleted, allowing the melt reaction with the residual gas, forming an additional sulphur-enriched layer upon the initial F-enriched or (F, O)-enriched surface film, thus resulting in the observed multi-layered structure shown in Fig. 10 (b and c). Besides, nitrogen reacted with the AZ91 melt until all reactions were completed. The oxide film shown in Fig. 6 may correspond to this reaction stage due to its nitride content. However, the results shows that the nitrides were not detected in the polished samples shown in Figs. 4 and 5, but only found on the test bar fracture surfaces. The nitrides may have hydrolysed during the sample preparation process, as follows [54]:(3)

Mg3N2 + 6H2O =3Mg(OH)2 + 2NH3↑(4)

AlN+ 3H2O =Al(OH)3 + NH3

In addition, Schmidt et al. [61] found that Mg3N2 and AlN could react to form ternary nitrides (Mg3AlnNn+2, n= 1, 2, 3…). HSC software did not contain the database of ternary nitrides, and it could not be added into the calculation. The oxide films in this stage may also contain ternary nitrides.

4.2. Evolution of entrainment defects formed in SF6/CO2

Fig. 13 shows the results of the thermodynamic calculation between AZ91 alloy and 0.5%SF6/CO2. This reaction processes can also be divided into three stages.

Fig. 13. An equilibrium diagram for the reaction between 7e-7 kg 0.5%SF6/CO2 and a sufficient amount of AZ91 alloy. The X axis denotes the amount of Mg alloy melt having reacted with the entrained gas, and the vertical Y-axis denotes the amounts of the reactants and products.

Stage 1: The formation of fluorides. SF6 and its decomposition products were consumed by the AZ91 melt, forming MgF2, AlF3, and ZnF2. As in the reaction of AZ91 in 0.5%SF6/air, the amount of ZnF2 was too small to be detected practically (1.51 × 10−13 kmol of ZnF2 compared with 2.67 × 10−10 kmol of MgF2). Sulphur accumulated in the residual trapped gas as S2(g) and a portion of the S2(g) reacted with CO2, to form SO2 and CO. The products in this reaction stage were consistent with the film shown in Fig. 11(a), which had a single layer structure that contained fluorides only.

Stage 2: The formation of oxides. AlF3 and ZnF2 reacted with the Mg in the AZ91 melt, forming MgF2, Al and Zn. The SO2 began to be consumed, producing oxides in the surface film and S2(g) in the cover gas. Meanwhile, the CO2 directly reacted with the AZ91 melt, forming CO, MgO, ZnO, and Al2O3. The oxide films shown in Figs. 9 and 11(b) may correspond to this reaction stage due to their oxygen-enriched layer and multi-layered structure.

The CO in the cover gas could further react with the AZ91 melt, producing C. This carbon may further react with Mg to form Mg carbides, when the temperature reduced (during solidification period) [62]. This may be the reason for the high carbon content in the oxide film shown in Figs. 89. Liang et al. [39] also reported carbon-detection in an AZ91 alloy surface film protected by SO2/CO2. The produced Al2O3 may be further combined with MgO, forming MgAl2O4 [63]. As discussed in Section 4.1, the alumina and spinel can react with Mg, causing an absence of aluminium in the surface films, as shown in Fig. 11.

Stage 3: The formation of Sulphide. the AZ91 melt began to consume S2(g) in the residual entrapped gas, forming ZnS and MgS. These reactions did not occur until the last stage of the reaction process, which could be the reason why the S-content in the defect shown Fig. 7(c) was small.

In summary, thermodynamic calculations indicate that the AZ91 melt will react with the cover gas to form fluorides firstly, then oxides and sulphides in the last. The oxide film in the different reaction stages would have different structures and compositions.

4.3. Effect of the carrier gases on consumption of the entrained gas and the reproducibility of AZ91 castings

The evolution processes of entrainment defects, formed in SF6/air and SF6/CO2, have been suggested in Sections 4.1 and 4.2. The theoretical calculations were verified with respect to the corresponding oxide films found in practical samples. The atmosphere within an entrainment defect could be efficiently consumed due to the reaction with liquid Mg-alloy, in a scenario dissimilar to the Al-alloy system (i.e., nitrogen in an entrained air bubble would not efficiently react with Al-alloy melt [64,65], however, nitrogen would be more readily consumed in liquid Mg alloys, commonly referred to as “nitrogen burning” [66]).

The reaction between the entrained gas and the surrounding liquid Mg-alloy converted the entrained gas into solid compounds (e.g. MgO) within the oxide film, thus reducing the void volume of the entrainment defect and hence probably causing a collapse of the defect (e.g., if an entrained gas of air was depleted by the surrounding liquid Mg-alloy, under an assumption that the melt temperature is 700 °C and the depth of liquid Mg-alloy is 10 cm, the total volume of the final solid products would be 0.044% of the initial volume taken by the entrapped air).

The relationship between the void volume reduction of entrainment defects and the corresponding casting properties has been widely studied in Al-alloy castings. Nyahumwa and Campbell [16] reported that the Hot Isostatic Pressing (HIP) process caused the entrainment defects in Al-alloy castings to collapse and their oxide surfaces forced into contact. The fatigue lives of their castings were improved after HIP. Nyahumwa and Campbell [16] also suggested a potential bonding of the double oxide films that were in contact with each other, but there was no direct evidence to support this. This binding phenomenon was further investigated by Aryafar et.al.[8], who re-melted two Al-alloy bars with oxide skins in a steel tube and then carried out a tensile strength test on the solidified sample. They found that the oxide skins of the Al-alloy bars strongly bonded with each other and became even stronger with an extension of the melt holding time, indicating a potential “healing” phenomenon due to the consumption of the entrained gas within the double oxide film structure. In addition, Raidszadeh and Griffiths [9,19] successfully reduced the negative effect of entrainment defects on the reproducibility of Al-alloy castings, by extending the melt holding time before solidification, which allowed the entrained gas to have a longer time to react with the surrounding melt.

With consideration of the previous work mentioned, the consumption of the entrained gas in Mg-alloy castings may diminish the negative effect of entrainment defects in the following two ways.

(1) Bonding phenomenon of the double oxide films. The sandwich-like structure shown in Fig. 5 and 7 indicated a potential bonding of the double oxide film structure. However, more evidence is required to quantify the increase in strength due to the bonding of the oxide films.

(2) Void volume reduction of entrainment defects. The positive effect of void-volume reduction on the quality of castings has been widely demonstrated by the HIP process [67]. As the evolution processes discussed in Section 4.14.2, the oxide films of entrainment defects can grow together due to an ongoing reaction between the entrained gas and surrounding AZ91 alloy melt. The volume of the final solid products was significant small compared with the entrained gas (i.e., 0.044% as previously mentioned).

Therefore, the consumption rate of the entrained gas (i.e., the growth rate of oxide films) may be a critical parameter for improving the quality of AZ91 alloy castings. The oxide film growth rate in the oxidization cell was accordingly further investigated.

Fig. 14 shows a comparison of the surface film growth rates in different cover gases (i.e., 0.5%SF6/air and 0.5%SF6/CO2). 15 random points on each sample were selected for film thickness measurements. The 95% confidence interval (95%CI) was computed under an assumption that the variation of the film thickness followed a Gaussian distribution. It can be seen that all the surface films formed in 0.5%SF6/air grew faster than those formed in 0.5%SF6/CO2. The different growth rates suggested that the entrained-gas consumption rate of 0.5%SF6/air was higher than that of 0.5%SF6/CO2, which was more beneficial for the consumption of the entrained gas.

Fig. 14. A comparison of the AZ91 alloy oxide film growth rates in 0.5%SF6/air and 0.5%SF6/CO2

It should be noted that, in the oxidation cell, the contact area of liquid AZ91 alloy and cover gas (i.e. the size of the crucible) was relatively small with consideration of the large volume of melt and gas. Consequently, the holding time for the oxide film growth within the oxidation cell was comparatively long (i.e., 5–30 min). However, the entrainment defects contained in a real casting are comparatively very small (i.e., a few microns size as shown in Figs. 36, and [7]), and the entrained gas is fully enclosed by the surrounding melt, creating a relatively large contact area. Hence the reaction time for cover gas and the AZ91 alloy melt may be comparatively short. In addition, the solidification time of real Mg-alloy sand castings can be a few minutes (e.g. Guo [68] reported that a Mg-alloy sand casting with 60 mm diameter required 4 min to be solidified). Therefore, it can be expected that an entrained gas trapped during an Mg-alloy melt pouring process will be readily consumed by the surrounding melt, especially for sand castings and large-size castings, where solidification times are long.

Therefore, the different cover gases (0.5%SF6/air and 0.5%SF6/CO2) associated with different consumption rates of the entrained gases may affect the reproducibility of the final castings. To verify this assumption, the AZ91 castings produced in 0.5%SF6/air and 0.5%SF6/CO2 were machined into test bars for mechanical evaluation. A Weibull analysis was carried out using both linear least square (LLS) method and non-linear least square (non-LLS) method [69].

Fig. 15(a-b) shows a traditional 2-p linearized Weibull plot of the UTS and elongation of the AZ91 alloy castings, obtained by the LLS method. The estimator used is P= (i-0.5)/N, which was suggested to cause the lowest bias among all the popular estimators [69,70]. The casting produced in SF6/air has an UTS Weibull moduli of 16.9, and an elongation Weibull moduli of 5.0. In contrast, the UTS and elongation Weibull modulus of the casting produced in SF6/CO2 are 7.7 and 2.7 respectively, suggesting that the reproducibility of the casting protected by SF6/CO2 were much lower than that produced in SF6/air.

Fig. 15. The Weibull modulus of AZ91 castings produced in different atmospheres, estimated by (a-b) the linear least square method, (c-d) the non-linear least square method, where SSR is the sum of residual squares.

In addition, the author’s previous publication [69] demonstrated a shortcoming of the linearized Weibull plots, which may cause a higher bias and incorrect R2 interruption of the Weibull estimation. A Non-LLS Weibull estimation was therefore carried out, as shown in Fig. 15 (c-d). The UTS Weibull modulus of the SF6/air casting was 20.8, while the casting produced under SF6/CO2 had a lower UTS Weibull modulus of 11.4, showing a clear difference in their reproducibility. In addition, the SF6/air elongation (El%) dataset also had a Weibull modulus (shape = 5.8) higher than the elongation dataset of SF6/CO2 (shape = 3.1). Therefore, both the LLS and Non-LLS estimations suggested that the SF6/air casting has a higher reproducibility than the SF6/CO2 casting. It supports the method that the use of air instead of CO2 contributes to a quicker consumption of the entrained gas, which may reduce the void volume within the defects. Therefore, the use of 0.5%SF6/air instead of 0.5%SF6/CO2 (which increased the consumption rate of the entrained gas) improved the reproducibility of the AZ91 castings.

However, it should be noted that not all the Mg-alloy foundries followed the casting process used in present work. The Mg-alloy melt in present work was degassed, thus reducing the effect of hydrogen on the consumption of the entrained gas (i.e., hydrogen could diffuse into the entrained gas, potentially suppressing the depletion of the entrained gas [7,71,72]). In contrast, in Mg-alloy foundries, the Mg-alloy melt is not normally degassed, since it was widely believed that there is not a ‘gas problem’ when casting magnesium and hence no significant change in tensile properties [73]. Although studies have shown the negative effect of hydrogen on the mechanical properties of Mg-alloy castings [41,42,73], a degassing process is still not very popular in Mg-alloy foundries.

Moreover, in present work, the sand mould cavity was flushed with the SF6 cover gas prior to pouring [22]. However, not all the Mg-alloy foundries flushed the mould cavity in this way. For example, the Stone Foundry Ltd (UK) used sulphur powder instead of the cover-gas flushing. The entrained gas within their castings may be SO2/air, rather than the protective gas.

Therefore, although the results in present work have shown that using air instead of CO2 improved the reproducibility of the final casting, it still requires further investigations to confirm the effect of carrier gases with respect to different industrial Mg-alloy casting processes.

7. Conclusion

Entrainment defects formed in an AZ91 alloy were observed. Their oxide films had two types of structure: single-layered and multi-layered. The multi-layered oxide film can grow together forming a sandwich-like structure in the final casting.2.

Both the experimental results and the theoretical thermodynamic calculations demonstrated that fluorides in the trapped gas were depleted prior to the consumption of sulphur. A three-stage evolution process of the double oxide film defects has been suggested. The oxide films contained different combinations of compounds, depending on the evolution stage. The defects formed in SF6/air had a similar structure to those formed in SF6/CO2, but the compositions of their oxide films were different. The oxide-film formation and evolution process of the entrainment defects were different from that of the Mg-alloy surface films previous reported (i.e., MgO formed prior to MgF2).3.

The growth rate of the oxide film was demonstrated to be greater under SF6/air than SF6/CO2, contributing to a quicker consumption of the damaging entrapped gas. The reproducibility of an AZ91 alloy casting improved when using SF6/air instead of SF6/CO2.

Acknowledgements

The authors acknowledge funding from the EPSRC LiME grant EP/H026177/1, and the help from Dr W.D. Griffiths and Mr. Adrian Carden (University of Birmingham). The casting work was carried out in University of Birmingham.

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Fig. 1. Schematic of lap welding for 6061/5182 aluminum alloys.

알루미늄 합금 겹침 용접 중 용접 형성, 용융 흐름 및 입자 구조에 대한 사인파 발진 레이저 빔의 영향

린 첸 가오 양 미시 옹 장 춘밍 왕
Lin Chen , Gaoyang Mi , Xiong Zhang , Chunming Wang *
중국 우한시 화중과학기술대학 재료공학부, 430074

Effects of sinusoidal oscillating laser beam on weld formation, melt flow and grain structure during aluminum alloys lap welding

Abstract

A numerical model of 1.5 mm 6061/5182 aluminum alloys thin sheets lap joints under laser sinusoidal oscillation (sine) welding and laser welding (SLW) weld was developed to simulate temperature distribution and melt flow. Unlike the common energy distribution of SLW, the sinusoidal oscillation of laser beam greatly homogenized the energy distribution and reduced the energy peak. The energy peaks were located at both sides of the sine weld, resulting in the tooth-shaped sectional formation. This paper illustrated the effect of the temperature gradient (G) and solidification rate (R) on the solidification microstructure by simulation. Results indicated that the center of the sine weld had a wider area with low G/R, promoting the formation of a wider equiaxed grain zone, and the columnar grains were slenderer because of greater GR. The porosity-free and non-penetration welds were obtained by the laser sinusoidal oscillation. The reasons were that the molten pool volume was enlarged, the volume proportion of keyhole was reduced and the turbulence in the molten pool was gentled, which was observed by the high-speed imaging and simulation results of melt flow. The tensile test of both welds showed a tensile fracture form along the fusion line, and the tensile strength of sine weld was significantly better than that of the SLW weld. This was because that the wider equiaxed grain area reduced the tendency of cracks and the finer grain size close to the fracture location. Defect-free and excellent welds are of great significance to the new energy vehicles industry.

온도 분포 및 용융 흐름을 시뮬레이션하기 위해 레이저 사인파 진동 (사인) 용접 및 레이저 용접 (SLW) 용접에서 1.5mm 6061/5182 알루미늄 합금 박판 랩 조인트 의 수치 모델이 개발되었습니다. SLW의 일반적인 에너지 분포와 달리 레이저 빔의 사인파 진동은 에너지 분포를 크게 균질화하고 에너지 피크를 줄였습니다. 에너지 피크는 사인 용접의 양쪽에 위치하여 톱니 모양의 단면이 형성되었습니다. 이 논문은 온도 구배(G)와 응고 속도 의 영향을 설명했습니다.(R) 시뮬레이션에 의한 응고 미세 구조. 결과는 사인 용접의 중심이 낮은 G/R로 더 넓은 영역을 가짐으로써 더 넓은 등축 결정립 영역의 형성을 촉진하고 더 큰 GR로 인해 주상 결정립 이 더 가늘다는 것을 나타냅니다. 다공성 및 비관통 용접은 레이저 사인파 진동에 의해 얻어졌습니다. 그 이유는 용융 풀의 부피가 확대되고 열쇠 구멍의 부피 비율이 감소하며 용융 풀의 난류가 완만해졌기 때문이며, 이는 용융 흐름의 고속 이미징 및 시뮬레이션 결과에서 관찰되었습니다. 두 용접부 의 인장시험 은 융착선을 따라 인장파괴형태를인장강도사인 용접의 경우 SLW 용접보다 훨씬 우수했습니다. 이는 등축 결정립 영역이 넓을수록 균열 경향이 감소하고 파단 위치에 근접한 입자 크기가 미세 하기 때문입니다. 결함이 없고 우수한 용접은 신에너지 자동차 산업에 매우 중요합니다.

Fig. 1. Schematic of lap welding for 6061/5182 aluminum alloys.
Fig. 1. Schematic of lap welding for 6061/5182 aluminum alloys.
Fig. 2. Finite element mesh.
Fig. 2. Finite element mesh.
Fig. 3. Weld morphologies of cross-section and upper surface for the two welds: (a) sine pattern weld; (b) SLW weld.
Fig. 3. Weld morphologies of cross-section and upper surface for the two welds: (a) sine pattern weld; (b) SLW weld.
Fig. 4. Calculation of laser energy distribution: (a)-(c) sine pattern weld; (d)-(f) SLW weld.
Fig. 4. Calculation of laser energy distribution: (a)-(c) sine pattern weld; (d)-(f) SLW weld.
Fig. 5. The partially melted region of zone A.
Fig. 5. The partially melted region of zone A.
Fig. 6. The simulated profiles of melted region for the two welds: (a) SLW weld; (b) sine pattern weld.
Fig. 6. The simulated profiles of melted region for the two welds: (a) SLW weld; (b) sine pattern weld.
Fig. 7. The temperature field simulation results of cross section for sine pattern weld.
Fig. 7. The temperature field simulation results of cross section for sine pattern weld.
Fig. 8. Dynamic behavior of the molten pool at the same time interval of 0.004 s within one oscillating period: (a) SLW weld; (b) sine pattern weld.
Fig. 8. Dynamic behavior of the molten pool at the same time interval of 0.004 s within one oscillating period: (a) SLW weld; (b) sine pattern weld.
Fig. 9. The temperature field and flow field of the molten pool for the SLW weld: (a)~(f) t = 80 ms~100 ms.
Fig. 9. The temperature field and flow field of the molten pool for the SLW weld: (a)~(f) t = 80 ms~100 ms.
Fig. 10. The temperature field and flow field of the molten pool for the sine pattern weld: (a)~(f) t = 151 ms~171 ms.
Fig. 10. The temperature field and flow field of the molten pool for the sine pattern weld: (a)~(f) t = 151 ms~171 ms.
Fig. 11. The evolution of the molten pool volume and keyhole depth within one period.
Fig. 11. The evolution of the molten pool volume and keyhole depth within one period.
Fig. 12. The X-ray inspection results for the two welds: (a) SLW weld, (b) sine pattern weld.
Fig. 12. The X-ray inspection results for the two welds: (a) SLW weld, (b) sine pattern weld.
Fig. 13. Comparison of the solidification parameters for sine and SLW patterns: (a) the temperature field simulated results of the molten pool upper surfaces; (b) temperature gradient G and solidification rate R along the molten pool boundary isotherm from weld centerline to the fusion boundary; (c) G/R; (d) GR.
Fig. 13. Comparison of the solidification parameters for sine and SLW patterns: (a) the temperature field simulated results of the molten pool upper surfaces; (b) temperature gradient G and solidification rate R along the molten pool boundary isotherm from weld centerline to the fusion boundary; (c) G/R; (d) GR.
Fig. 14. The EBSD results of equiaxed grain zone in the weld center of: (a) sine pattern weld; (b) SLW weld; (c) grain size.
Fig. 14. The EBSD results of equiaxed grain zone in the weld center of: (a) sine pattern weld; (b) SLW weld; (c) grain size.
Fig. 15. (a) EBSD results of horizontal sections of SLW weld and sine pattern weld; (b) The columnar crystal widths of SLW weld and sine pattern weld.
Fig. 15. (a) EBSD results of horizontal sections of SLW weld and sine pattern weld; (b) The columnar crystal widths of SLW weld and sine pattern weld.
Fig. 16. (a) The tensile test results of the two welds; (b) Fracture location of SLW weld; (b) Fracture location of sine pattern weld.
Fig. 16. (a) The tensile test results of the two welds; (b) Fracture location of SLW weld; (b) Fracture location of sine pattern weld.

Keywords

Laser welding, Sinusoidal oscillating, Energy distribution, Numerical simulation, Molten pool flow, Grain structure

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Fig. 1. Schematic figure showing the PREP with additional gas flowing on the end face of electrode.

플라즈마 회전 전극 공정 중 분말 형성에 대한 공정 매개변수 및 냉각 가스의 영향

Effects of process parameters and cooling gas on powder formation during the plasma rotating electrode process

Yujie Cuia Yufan Zhaoa1 Haruko Numatab Kenta Yamanakaa Huakang Biana Kenta Aoyagia AkihikoChibaa
aInstitute for Materials Research, Tohoku University, Sendai 980-8577, JapanbDepartment of Materials Processing, Graduate School of Engineering, Tohoku University, Sendai 980-8577, Japan

Highlights

•The limitation of increasing the rotational speed in decreasing powder size was clarified.

•Cooling and disturbance effects varied with the gas flowing rate.

•Inclined angle of the residual electrode end face affected powder formation.

•Additional cooling gas flowing could be applied to control powder size.

Abstract

The plasma rotating electrode process (PREP) is rapidly becoming an important powder fabrication method in additive manufacturing. However, the low production rate of fine PREP powder limits the development of PREP. Herein, we investigated different factors affecting powder formation during PREP by combining experimental methods and numerical simulations. The limitation of increasing the rotation electrode speed in decreasing powder size is attributed to the increased probability of adjacent droplets recombining and the decreased tendency of granulation. The effects of additional Ar/He gas flowing on the rotational electrode on powder formation is determined through the cooling effect, the disturbance effect, and the inclined effect of the residual electrode end face simultaneously. A smaller-sized powder was obtained in the He atmosphere owing to the larger inclined angle of the residual electrode end face compared to the Ar atmosphere. Our research highlights the route for the fabrication of smaller-sized powders using PREP.

플라즈마 회전 전극 공정(PREP)은 적층 제조 에서 중요한 분말 제조 방법으로 빠르게 자리잡고 있습니다. 그러나 미세한 PREP 분말의 낮은 생산율은 PREP의 개발을 제한합니다. 여기에서 우리는 실험 방법과 수치 시뮬레이션을 결합하여 PREP 동안 분말 형성에 영향을 미치는 다양한 요인을 조사했습니다. 분말 크기 감소에서 회전 전극 속도 증가의 한계는 인접한 액적 재결합 확률 증가 및 과립화 경향 감소에 기인합니다.. 회전 전극에 흐르는 추가 Ar/He 가스가 분말 형성에 미치는 영향은 냉각 효과, 외란 효과 및 잔류 전극 단면의 경사 효과를 통해 동시에 결정됩니다. He 분위기에서는 Ar 분위기에 비해 잔류 전극 단면의 경사각이 크기 때문에 더 작은 크기의 분말이 얻어졌다. 우리의 연구는 PREP를 사용하여 더 작은 크기의 분말을 제조하는 경로를 강조합니다.

Keywords

Plasma rotating electrode process

Ti-6Al-4 V alloy, Rotating speed, Numerical simulation, Gas flowing, Powder size

Introduction

With the development of additive manufacturing, there has been a significant increase in high-quality powder production demand [1,2]. The initial powder characteristics are closely related to the uniform powder spreading [3,4], packing density [5], and layer thickness observed during additive manufacturing [6], thus determining the mechanical properties of the additive manufactured parts [7,8]. Gas atomization (GA) [9–11], centrifugal atomization (CA) [12–15], and the plasma rotating electrode process (PREP) are three important powder fabrication methods.

Currently, GA is the dominant powder fabrication method used in additive manufacturing [16] for the fabrication of a wide range of alloys [11]. GA produces powders by impinging a liquid metal stream to droplets through a high-speed gas flow of nitrogen, argon, or helium. With relatively low energy consumption and a high fraction of fine powders, GA has become the most popular powder manufacturing technology for AM.

The entrapped gas pores are generally formed in the powder after solidification during GA, in which the molten metal is impacted by a high-speed atomization gas jet. In addition, satellites are formed in GA powder when fine particles adhere to partially molten particles.

The gas pores of GA powder result in porosity generation in the additive manufactured parts, which in turn deteriorates its mechanical properties because pores can become crack initiation sites [17]. In CA, a molten metal stream is poured directly onto an atomizer disc spinning at a high rotational speed. A thin film is formed on the surface of the disc, which breaks into small droplets due to the centrifugal force. Metal powder is obtained when these droplets solidify.

Compared with GA powder, CA powder exhibits higher sphericity, lower impurity content, fewer satellites, and narrower particle size distribution [12]. However, very high speed is required to obtain fine powder by CA. In PREP, the molten metal, melted using the plasma arc, is ejected from the rotating rod through centrifugal force. Compared with GA powder, PREP-produced powders also have higher sphericity and fewer pores and satellites [18].

For instance, PREP-fabricated Ti6Al-4 V alloy powder with a powder size below 150 μm exhibits lower porosity than gas-atomized powder [19], which decreases the porosity of additive manufactured parts. Furthermore, the process window during electron beam melting was broadened using PREP powder compared to GA powder in Inconel 718 alloy [20] owing to the higher sphericity of the PREP powder.

In summary, PREP powder exhibits many advantages and is highly recommended for powder-based additive manufacturing and direct energy deposition-type additive manufacturing. However, the low production rate of fine PREP powder limits the widespread application of PREP powder in additive manufacturing.

Although increasing the rotating speed is an effective method to decrease the powder size [21,22], the reduction in powder size becomes smaller with the increased rotating speed [23]. The occurrence of limiting effects has not been fully clarified yet.

Moreover, the powder size can be decreased by increasing the rotating electrode diameter [24]. However, these methods are quite demanding for the PREP equipment. For instance, it is costly to revise the PREP equipment to meet the demand of further increasing the rotating speed or electrode diameter.

Accordingly, more feasible methods should be developed to further decrease the PREP powder size. Another factor that influences powder formation is the melting rate [25]. It has been reported that increasing the melting rate decreases the powder size of Inconel 718 alloy [26].

In contrast, the powder size of SUS316 alloy was decreased by decreasing the plasma current within certain ranges. This was ascribed to the formation of larger-sized droplets from fluid strips with increased thickness and spatial density at higher plasma currents [27]. The powder size of NiTi alloy also decreases at lower melting rates [28]. Consequently, altering the melting rate, varied with the plasma current, is expected to regulate the PREP powder size.

Furthermore, gas flowing has a significant influence on powder formation [27,29–31]. On one hand, the disturbance effect of gas flowing promotes fluid granulation, which in turn contributes to the formation of smaller-sized powder [27]. On the other hand, the cooling effect of gas flowing facilitates the formation of large-sized powder due to increased viscosity and surface tension. However, there is a lack of systematic research on the effect of different gas flowing on powder formation during PREP.

Herein, the authors systematically studied the effects of rotating speed, electrode diameter, plasma current, and gas flowing on the formation of Ti-6Al-4 V alloy powder during PREP as additive manufactured Ti-6Al-4 V alloy exhibits great application potential [32]. Numerical simulations were conducted to explain why increasing the rotating speed is not effective in decreasing powder size when the rotation speed reaches a certain level. In addition, the different factors incited by the Ar/He gas flowing on powder formation were clarified.

Fig. 1. Schematic figure showing the PREP with additional gas flowing on the end face of electrode.
Fig. 1. Schematic figure showing the PREP with additional gas flowing on the end face of electrode.

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Figure 3.10: Snapshots of Temperature Profile for Single Track in Keyhole Regime (P = 250W and V = 0.5m/s) at the Preheating Temperature of 100 °C

Multiscale Process Modeling of Residual Deformation and Defect Formation for Laser Powder Bed Fusion Additive Manufacturing

Qian Chen, PhD
University of Pittsburgh, 2021

레이저 분말 베드 퓨전(L-PBF) 적층 제조(AM)는 우수한 기계적 특성으로 그물 모양에 가까운 복잡한 부품을 생산할 수 있습니다. 그러나 빌드 실패 및 다공성과 같은 결함으로 이어지는 원치 않는 잔류 응력 및 왜곡이 L-PBF의 광범위한 적용을 방해하고 있습니다.

L-PBF의 잠재력을 최대한 실현하기 위해 잔류 변형, 용융 풀 및 다공성 형성을 예측하는 다중 규모 모델링 방법론이 개발되었습니다. L-PBF의 잔류 변형 및 응력을 부품 규모에서 예측하기 위해 고유 변형 ​​방법을 기반으로 하는 다중 규모 프로세스 모델링 프레임워크가 제안됩니다.

고유한 변형 벡터는 마이크로 스케일에서 충실도가 높은 상세한 다층 프로세스 시뮬레이션에서 추출됩니다. 균일하지만 이방성인 변형은 잔류 왜곡 및 응력을 예측하기 위해 준 정적 평형 유한 요소 분석(FEA)에서 레이어별로 L-PBF 부품에 적용됩니다.

부품 규모에서의 잔류 변형 및 응력 예측 외에도 분말 규모의 다중물리 모델링을 수행하여 공정 매개변수, 예열 온도 및 스패터링 입자에 의해 유도된 용융 풀 변동 및 결함 형성을 연구합니다. 이러한 요인과 관련된 용융 풀 역학 및 다공성 형성 메커니즘은 시뮬레이션 및 실험을 통해 밝혀졌습니다.

제안된 부품 규모 잔류 응력 및 왜곡 모델을 기반으로 경로 계획 방법은 큰 잔류 변형 및 건물 파손을 방지하기 위해 주어진 형상에 대한 레이저 스캐닝 경로를 조정하기 위해 개발되었습니다.

연속 및 아일랜드 스캐닝 전략을 위한 기울기 기반 경로 계획이 공식화되고 공식화된 컴플라이언스 및 스트레스 최소화 문제에 대한 전체 감도 분석이 수행됩니다. 이 제안된 경로 계획 방법의 타당성과 효율성은 AconityONE L-PBF 시스템을 사용하여 실험적으로 입증되었습니다.

또한 기계 학습을 활용한 데이터 기반 프레임워크를 개발하여 L-PBF에 대한 부품 규모의 열 이력을 예측합니다. 본 연구에서는 실시간 열 이력 예측을 위해 CNN(Convolutional Neural Network)과 RNN(Recurrent Neural Network)을 포함하는 순차적 기계 학습 모델을 제안합니다.

유한 요소 해석과 비교하여 100배의 예측 속도 향상이 달성되어 실제 제작 프로세스보다 빠른 예측이 가능하고 실시간 온도 프로파일을 사용할 수 있습니다.

Laser powder bed fusion (L-PBF) additive manufacturing (AM) is capable of producing complex parts near net shape with good mechanical properties. However, undesired residual stress and distortion that lead to build failure and defects such as porosity are preventing broader applications of L-PBF. To realize the full potential of L-PBF, a multiscale modeling methodology is developed to predict residual deformation, melt pool, and porosity formation. To predict the residual deformation and stress in L-PBF at part-scale, a multiscale process modeling framework based on inherent strain method is proposed.

Inherent strain vectors are extracted from detailed multi-layer process simulation with high fidelity at micro-scale. Uniform but anisotropic strains are then applied to L-PBF part in a layer-by-layer fashion in a quasi-static equilibrium finite element analysis (FEA) to predict residual distortion and stress. Besides residual distortion and stress prediction at part scale, multiphysics modeling at powder scale is performed to study the melt pool variation and defect formation induced by process parameters, preheating temperature and spattering particles. Melt pool dynamics and porosity formation mechanisms associated with these factors are revealed through simulation and experiments.

Based on the proposed part-scale residual stress and distortion model, path planning method is developed to tailor the laser scanning path for a given geometry to prevent large residual deformation and building failures. Gradient based path planning for continuous and island scanning strategy is formulated and full sensitivity analysis for the formulated compliance- and stress-minimization problem is performed.

The feasibility and effectiveness of this proposed path planning method is demonstrated experimentally using the AconityONE L-PBF system. In addition, a data-driven framework utilizing machine learning is developed to predict the thermal history at part-scale for L-PBF.

In this work, a sequential machine learning model including convolutional neural network (CNN) and recurrent neural network (RNN), long shortterm memory unit, is proposed for real-time thermal history prediction. A 100x prediction speed improvement is achieved compared to the finite element analysis which makes the prediction faster than real fabrication process and real-time temperature profile available.

Figure 1.1: Schematic Overview of Metal Laser Powder Bed Fusion Process [2]
Figure 1.1: Schematic Overview of Metal Laser Powder Bed Fusion Process [2]
Figure 1.2: Commercial Powder Bed Fusion Systems
Figure 1.2: Commercial Powder Bed Fusion Systems
Figure 1.3: Commercial Metal Components Fabricated by Powder Bed Fusion Additive Manufacturing: (a) GE Fuel Nozzle; (b) Stryker Hip Biomedical Implant.
Figure 1.3: Commercial Metal Components Fabricated by Powder Bed Fusion Additive Manufacturing: (a) GE Fuel Nozzle; (b) Stryker Hip Biomedical Implant.
Figure 2.1: Proposed Multiscale Process Simulation Framework
Figure 2.1: Proposed Multiscale Process Simulation Framework
Figure 2.2: (a) Experimental Setup for In-situ Thermocouple Measurement in the EOS M290 Build Chamber; (b) Themocouple Locations on the Bottom Side of the Substrate.
Figure 2.2: (a) Experimental Setup for In-situ Thermocouple Measurement in the EOS M290 Build Chamber; (b) Themocouple Locations on the Bottom Side of the Substrate.
Figure 2.3: (a) Finite Element Model for Single Layer Thermal Analysis; (b) Deposition Layer
Figure 2.3: (a) Finite Element Model for Single Layer Thermal Analysis; (b) Deposition Layer
Figure 2.4: Core-skin layer: (a) Surface Morphology; (b) Scanning Strategy; (c) Transient Temperature Distribution and Temperature History at (d) Point 1; (e) Point 2 and (f) Point 3
Figure 2.4: Core-skin layer: (a) Surface Morphology; (b) Scanning Strategy; (c) Transient Temperature Distribution and Temperature History at (d) Point 1; (e) Point 2 and (f) Point 3
Figure 2.5: (a) Scanning Orientation of Each Layer; (b) Finite Element Model for Micro-scale Representative Volume
Figure 2.5: (a) Scanning Orientation of Each Layer; (b) Finite Element Model for Micro-scale Representative Volume
Figure 2.6: Bottom Layer (a) Thermal History; (b) Plastic Strain and (c) Elastic Strain Evolution History
Figure 2.6: Bottom Layer (a) Thermal History; (b) Plastic Strain and (c) Elastic Strain Evolution History
Figure 2.7: Bottom Layer Inherent Strain under Default Process Parameters along Horizontal Scanning Path
Figure 2.7: Bottom Layer Inherent Strain under Default Process Parameters along Horizontal Scanning Path
Figure 2.8: Snapshots of the Element Activation Process
Figure 2.8: Snapshots of the Element Activation Process
Figure 2.9: Double Cantilever Beam Structure Built by the EOS M290 DMLM Process (a) Before and (b) After Cutting off; (c) Faro Laser ScanArm V3 for Distortion Measurement
Figure 2.9: Double Cantilever Beam Structure Built by the EOS M290 DMLM Process (a) Before and (b) After Cutting off; (c) Faro Laser ScanArm V3 for Distortion Measurement
Figure 2.10: Square Canonical Structure Built by the EOS M290 DMLM Process
Figure 2.10: Square Canonical Structure Built by the EOS M290 DMLM Process
Figure 2.11: Finite Element Mesh for the Square Canonical and Snapshots of Element Activation Process
Figure 2.11: Finite Element Mesh for the Square Canonical and Snapshots of Element Activation Process
Figure 2.12: Simulated Distortion Field for the Double Cantilever Beam before Cutting off the Supports: (a) Inherent Strain Method; (b) Simufact Additive 3.1
Figure 2.12: Simulated Distortion Field for the Double Cantilever Beam before Cutting off the Supports: (a) Inherent Strain Method; (b) Simufact Additive 3.1
Figure 3.10: Snapshots of Temperature Profile for Single Track in Keyhole Regime (P = 250W and V = 0.5m/s) at the Preheating Temperature of 100 °C
Figure 3.10: Snapshots of Temperature Profile for Single Track in Keyhole Regime (P = 250W and V = 0.5m/s) at the Preheating Temperature of 100 °C
s) at the Preheating Temperature of 500 °C
s) at the Preheating Temperature of 500 °C
Figure 3.15: Melt Pool Cross Section Comparison Between Simulation and Experiment for Single Track
Figure 3.15: Melt Pool Cross Section Comparison Between Simulation and Experiment for Single Track

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Figure 3 Simulation PTC pipes enhanced with copper foam and nanoparticles in FLOW-3D software.

다공성 미디어 및 나노유체에 의해 강화된 수집기로 태양광 CCHP 시스템의 최적화

Optimization of Solar CCHP Systems with Collector Enhanced by Porous Media and Nanofluid


Navid Tonekaboni,1Mahdi Feizbahr,2 Nima Tonekaboni,1Guang-Jun Jiang,3,4 and Hong-Xia Chen3,4

Abstract

태양열 집열기의 낮은 효율은 CCHP(Solar Combined Cooling, Heating, and Power) 사이클의 문제점 중 하나로 언급될 수 있습니다. 태양계를 개선하기 위해 나노유체와 다공성 매체가 태양열 집열기에 사용됩니다.

다공성 매질과 나노입자를 사용하는 장점 중 하나는 동일한 조건에서 더 많은 에너지를 흡수할 수 있다는 것입니다. 이 연구에서는 평균 일사량이 1b인 따뜻하고 건조한 지역의 600 m2 건물의 전기, 냉방 및 난방을 생성하기 위해 다공성 매질과 나노유체를 사용하여 태양열 냉난방 복합 발전(SCCHP) 시스템을 최적화했습니다.

본 논문에서는 침전물이 형성되지 않는 lb = 820 w/m2(이란) 정도까지 다공성 물질에서 나노유체의 최적량을 계산하였다. 이 연구에서 태양열 집열기는 구리 다공성 매체(95% 다공성)와 CuO 및 Al2O3 나노 유체로 향상되었습니다.

나노유체의 0.1%-0.6%가 작동 유체로 물에 추가되었습니다. 나노유체의 0.5%가 태양열 집열기 및 SCCHP 시스템에서 가장 높은 에너지 및 엑서지 효율 향상으로 이어지는 것으로 밝혀졌습니다.

본 연구에서 포물선형 집열기(PTC)의 최대 에너지 및 엑서지 효율은 각각 74.19% 및 32.6%입니다. 그림 1은 태양 CCHP의 주기를 정확하게 설명하기 위한 그래픽 초록으로 언급될 수 있습니다.

The low efficiency of solar collectors can be mentioned as one of the problems in solar combined cooling, heating, and power (CCHP) cycles. For improving solar systems, nanofluid and porous media are used in solar collectors. One of the advantages of using porous media and nanoparticles is to absorb more energy under the same conditions. In this research, a solar combined cooling, heating, and power (SCCHP) system has been optimized by porous media and nanofluid for generating electricity, cooling, and heating of a 600 m2 building in a warm and dry region with average solar radiation of Ib = 820 w/m2 in Iran. In this paper, the optimal amount of nanofluid in porous materials has been calculated to the extent that no sediment is formed. In this study, solar collectors were enhanced with copper porous media (95% porosity) and CuO and Al2O3 nanofluids. 0.1%–0.6% of the nanofluids were added to water as working fluids; it is found that 0.5% of the nanofluids lead to the highest energy and exergy efficiency enhancement in solar collectors and SCCHP systems. Maximum energy and exergy efficiency of parabolic thermal collector (PTC) riches in this study are 74.19% and 32.6%, respectively. Figure 1 can be mentioned as a graphical abstract for accurately describing the cycle of solar CCHP.

1. Introduction

Due to the increase in energy consumption, the use of clean energy is one of the important goals of human societies. In the last four decades, the use of cogeneration cycles has increased significantly due to high efficiency. Among clean energy, the use of solar energy has become more popular due to its greater availability [1]. Low efficiency of energy production, transmission, and distribution system makes a new system to generate simultaneously electricity, heating, and cooling as an essential solution to be widely used. The low efficiency of the electricity generation, transmission, and distribution system makes the CCHP system a basic solution to eliminate waste of energy. CCHP system consists of a prime mover (PM), a power generator, a heat recovery system (produce extra heating/cooling/power), and thermal energy storage (TES) [2]. Solar combined cooling, heating, and power (SCCHP) has been started three decades ago. SCCHP is a system that receives its propulsive force from solar energy; in this cycle, solar collectors play the role of propulsive for generating power in this system [3].

Increasing the rate of energy consumption in the whole world because of the low efficiency of energy production, transmission, and distribution system causes a new cogeneration system to generate electricity, heating, and cooling energy as an essential solution to be widely used. Building energy utilization fundamentally includes power required for lighting, home electrical appliances, warming and cooling of building inside, and boiling water. Domestic usage contributes to an average of 35% of the world’s total energy consumption [4].

Due to the availability of solar energy in all areas, solar collectors can be used to obtain the propulsive power required for the CCHP cycle. Solar energy is the main source of energy in renewable applications. For selecting a suitable area to use solar collectors, annual sunshine hours, the number of sunny days, minus temperature and frosty days, and the windy status of the region are essentially considered [5]. Iran, with an average of more than 300 sunny days, is one of the suitable countries to use solar energy. Due to the fact that most of the solar radiation is in the southern regions of Iran, also the concentration of cities is low in these areas, and transmission lines are far apart, one of the best options is to use CCHP cycles based on solar collectors [6]. One of the major problems of solar collectors is their low efficiency [7]. Low efficiency increases the area of collectors, which increases the initial cost of solar systems and of course increases the initial payback period. To increase the efficiency of solar collectors and improve their performance, porous materials and nanofluids are used to increase their workability.

There are two ways to increase the efficiency of solar collectors and mechanical and fluid improvement. In the first method, using porous materials or helical filaments inside the collector pipes causes turbulence of the flow and increases heat transfer. In the second method, using nanofluids or salt and other materials increases the heat transfer of water. The use of porous materials has grown up immensely over the past twenty years. Porous materials, especially copper porous foam, are widely used in solar collectors. Due to the high contact surface area, porous media are appropriate candidates for solar collectors [8]. A number of researchers investigated Solar System performance in accordance with energy and exergy analyses. Zhai et al. [9] reviewed the performance of a small solar-powered system in which the energy efficiency was 44.7% and the electrical efficiency was 16.9%.

Abbasi et al. [10] proposed an innovative multiobjective optimization to optimize the design of a cogeneration system. Results showed the CCHP system based on an internal diesel combustion engine was the applicable alternative at all regions with different climates. The diesel engine can supply the electrical requirement of 31.0% and heating demand of 3.8% for building.

Jiang et al. [11] combined the experiment and simulation together to analyze the performance of a cogeneration system. Moreover, some research focused on CCHP systems using solar energy. It integrated sustainable and renewable technologies in the CCHP, like PV, Stirling engine, and parabolic trough collector (PTC) [21215].

Wang et al. [16] optimized a cogeneration solar cooling system with a Rankine cycle and ejector to reach the maximum total system efficiency of 55.9%. Jing et al. analyzed a big-scale building with the SCCHP system and auxiliary heaters to produced electrical, cooling, and heating power. The maximum energy efficiency reported in their work is 46.6% [17]. Various optimization methods have been used to improve the cogeneration system, minimum system size, and performance, such as genetic algorithm [1819].

Hirasawa et al. [20] investigated the effect of using porous media to reduce thermal waste in solar systems. They used the high-porosity metal foam on top of the flat plate solar collector and observed that thermal waste decreased by 7% due to natural heat transfer. Many researchers study the efficiency improvement of the solar collector by changing the collector’s shapes or working fluids. However, the most effective method is the use of nanofluids in the solar collector as working fluid [21]. In the experimental study done by Jouybari et al. [22], the efficiency enhancement up to 8.1% was achieved by adding nanofluid in a flat plate collector. In this research, by adding porous materials to the solar collector, collector efficiency increased up to 92% in a low flow regime. Subramani et al. [23] analyzed the thermal performance of the parabolic solar collector with Al2O3 nanofluid. They conducted their experiments with Reynolds number range 2401 to 7202 and mass flow rate 0.0083 to 0.05 kg/s. The maximum efficiency improvement in this experiment was 56% at 0.05 kg/s mass flow rate.

Shojaeizadeh et al. [24] investigated the analysis of the second law of thermodynamic on the flat plate solar collector using Al2O3/water nanofluid. Their research showed that energy efficiency rose up to 1.9% and the exergy efficiency increased by a maximum of 0.72% compared to pure water. Tiwari et al. [25] researched on the thermal performance of solar flat plate collectors for working fluid water with different nanofluids. The result showed that using 1.5% (optimum) particle volume fraction of Al2O3 nanofluid as an absorbing medium causes the thermal efficiency to enhance up to 31.64%.

The effect of porous media and nanofluids on solar collectors has already been investigated in the literature but the SCCHP system with a collector embedded by both porous media and nanofluid for enhancing the ratio of nanoparticle in nanofluid for preventing sedimentation was not discussed. In this research, the amount of energy and exergy of the solar CCHP cycles with parabolic solar collectors in both base and improved modes with a porous material (copper foam with 95% porosity) and nanofluid with different ratios of nanoparticles was calculated. In the first step, it is planned to design a CCHP system based on the required load, and, in the next step, it will analyze the energy and exergy of the system in a basic and optimize mode. In the optimize mode, enhanced solar collectors with porous material and nanofluid in different ratios (0.1%–0.7%) were used to optimize the ratio of nanofluids to prevent sedimentation.

2. Cycle Description

CCHP is one of the methods to enhance energy efficiency and reduce energy loss and costs. The SCCHP system used a solar collector as a prime mover of the cogeneration system and assisted the boiler to generate vapor for the turbine. Hot water flows from the expander to the absorption chiller in summer or to the radiator or fan coil in winter. Finally, before the hot water wants to flow back to the storage tank, it flows inside a heat exchanger for generating domestic hot water [26].

For designing of solar cogeneration system and its analysis, it is necessary to calculate the electrical, heating (heating load is the load required for the production of warm water and space heating), and cooling load required for the case study considered in a residential building with an area of 600 m2 in the warm region of Iran (Zahedan). In Table 1, the average of the required loads is shown for the different months of a year (average of electrical, heating, and cooling load calculated with CARRIER software).Table 1 The average amount of electric charges, heating load, and cooling load used in the different months of the year in the city of Zahedan for a residential building with 600 m2.

According to Table 1, the maximum magnitude of heating, cooling, and electrical loads is used to calculate the cogeneration system. The maximum electric load is 96 kW, the maximum amount of heating load is 62 kW, and the maximum cooling load is 118 kW. Since the calculated loads are average, all loads increased up to 10% for the confidence coefficient. With the obtained values, the solar collector area and other cogeneration system components are calculated. The cogeneration cycle is capable of producing 105 kW electric power, 140 kW cooling capacity, and 100 kW heating power.

2.1. System Analysis Equations

An analysis is done by considering the following assumptions:(1)The system operates under steady-state conditions(2)The system is designed for the warm region of Iran (Zahedan) with average solar radiation Ib = 820 w/m2(3)The pressure drops in heat exchangers, separators, storage tanks, and pipes are ignored(4)The pressure drop is negligible in all processes and no expectable chemical reactions occurred in the processes(5)Potential, kinetic, and chemical exergy are not considered due to their insignificance(6)Pumps have been discontinued due to insignificance throughout the process(7)All components are assumed adiabatic

Schematic shape of the cogeneration cycle is shown in Figure 1 and all data are given in Table 2.

Figure 1 Schematic shape of the cogeneration cycle.Table 2 Temperature and humidity of different points of system.

Based on the first law of thermodynamic, energy analysis is based on the following steps.

First of all, the estimated solar radiation energy on collector has been calculated:where α is the heat transfer enhancement coefficient based on porous materials added to the collector’s pipes. The coefficient α is increased by the porosity percentage, the type of porous material (in this case, copper with a porosity percentage of 95), and the flow of fluid to the collector equation.

Collector efficiency is going to be calculated by the following equation [9]:

Total energy received by the collector is given by [9]

Also, the auxiliary boiler heat load is [2]

Energy consumed from vapor to expander is calculated by [2]

The power output form by the screw expander [9]:

The efficiency of the expander is 80% in this case [11].

In this step, cooling and heating loads were calculated and then, the required heating load to reach sanitary hot water will be calculated as follows:

First step: calculating the cooling load with the following equation [9]:

Second step: calculating heating loads [9]:

Then, calculating the required loud for sanitary hot water will be [9]

According to the above-mentioned equations, efficiency is [9]

In the third step, calculated exergy analysis as follows.

First, the received exergy collector from the sun is calculated [9]:

In the previous equation, f is the constant of air dilution.

The received exergy from the collector is [9]

In the case of using natural gas in an auxiliary heater, the gas exergy is calculated from the following equation [12]:

Delivering exergy from vapor to expander is calculated with the following equation [9]:

In the fourth step, the exergy in cooling and heating is calculated by the following equation:

Cooling exergy in summer is calculated [9]:

Heating exergy in winter is calculated [9]:

In the last step based on thermodynamic second law, exergy efficiency has been calculated from the following equation and the above-mentioned calculated loads [9]:

3. Porous Media

The porous medium that filled the test section is copper foam with a porosity of 95%. The foams are determined in Figure 2 and also detailed thermophysical parameters and dimensions are shown in Table 3.

Figure 2 Copper foam with a porosity of 95%.Table 3 Thermophysical parameters and dimensions of copper foam.

In solar collectors, copper porous materials are suitable for use at low temperatures and have an easier and faster manufacturing process than ceramic porous materials. Due to the high coefficient conductivity of copper, the use of copper metallic foam to increase heat transfer is certainly more efficient in solar collectors.

Porous media and nanofluid in solar collector’s pipes were simulated in FLOW-3D software using the finite-difference method [27]. Nanoparticles Al2O3 and CUO are mostly used in solar collector enhancement. In this research, different concentrations of nanofluid are added to the parabolic solar collectors with porous materials (copper foam with porosity of 95%) to achieve maximum heat transfer in the porous materials before sedimentation. After analyzing PTC pipes with the nanofluid flow in FLOW-3D software, for energy and exergy efficiency analysis, Carrier software results were used as EES software input. Simulation PTC with porous media inside collector pipe and nanofluids sedimentation is shown in Figure 3.

Figure 3 Simulation PTC pipes enhanced with copper foam and nanoparticles in FLOW-3D software.

3.1. Nano Fluid

In this research, copper and silver nanofluids (Al2O3, CuO) have been added with percentages of 0.1%–0.7% as the working fluids. The nanoparticle properties are given in Table 4. Also, system constant parameters are presented in Table 4, which are available as default input in the EES software.Table 4 Properties of the nanoparticles [9].

System constant parameters for input in the software are shown in Table 5.Table 5 System constant parameters.

The thermal properties of the nanofluid can be obtained from equations (18)–(21). The basic fluid properties are indicated by the index (bf) and the properties of the nanoparticle silver with the index (np).

The density of the mixture is shown in the following equation [28]:where ρ is density and ϕ is the nanoparticles volume fraction.

The specific heat capacity is calculated from the following equation [29]:

The thermal conductivity of the nanofluid is calculated from the following equation [29]:

The parameter β is the ratio of the nanolayer thickness to the original particle radius and, usually, this parameter is taken equal to 0.1 for the calculated thermal conductivity of the nanofluids.

The mixture viscosity is calculated as follows [30]:

In all equations, instead of water properties, working fluids with nanofluid are used. All of the above equations and parameters are entered in the EES software for calculating the energy and exergy of solar collectors and the SCCHP cycle. All calculation repeats for both nanofluids with different concentrations of nanofluid in the solar collector’s pipe.

4. Results and Discussion

In the present study, relations were written according to Wang et al. [16] and the system analysis was performed to ensure the correctness of the code. The energy and exergy charts are plotted based on the main values of the paper and are shown in Figures 4 and 5. The error rate in this simulation is 1.07%.

Figure 4 Verification charts of energy analysis results.

Figure 5 Verification charts of exergy analysis results.

We may also investigate the application of machine learning paradigms [3141] and various hybrid, advanced optimization approaches that are enhanced in terms of exploration and intensification [4255], and intelligent model studies [5661] as well, for example, methods such as particle swarm optimizer (PSO) [6062], differential search (DS) [63], ant colony optimizer (ACO) [616465], Harris hawks optimizer (HHO) [66], grey wolf optimizer (GWO) [5367], differential evolution (DE) [6869], and other fusion and boosted systems [4146485054557071].

At the first step, the collector is modified with porous copper foam material. 14 cases have been considered for the analysis of the SCCHP system (Table 6). It should be noted that the adding of porous media causes an additional pressure drop inside the collector [922263072]. All fourteen cases use copper foam with a porosity of 95 percent. To simulate the effect of porous materials and nanofluids, the first solar PTC pipes have been simulated in the FLOW-3D software and then porous media (copper foam with porosity of 95%) and fluid flow with nanoparticles (AL2O3 and CUO) are generated in the software. After analyzing PTC pipes in FLOW-3D software, for analyzing energy and exergy efficiency, software outputs were used as EES software input for optimization ratio of sedimentation and calculating energy and exergy analyses.Table 6 Collectors with different percentages of nanofluids and porous media.

In this research, an enhanced solar collector with both porous media and Nanofluid is investigated. In the present study, 0.1–0.5% CuO and Al2O3 concentration were added to the collector fully filled by porous media to achieve maximum energy and exergy efficiencies of solar CCHP systems. All steps of the investigation are shown in Table 6.

Energy and exergy analyses of parabolic solar collectors and SCCHP systems are shown in Figures 6 and 7.

Figure 6 Energy and exergy efficiencies of the PTC with porous media and nanofluid.

Figure 7 Energy and exergy efficiency of the SCCHP.

Results show that the highest energy and exergy efficiencies are 74.19% and 32.6%, respectively, that is achieved in Step 12 (parabolic collectors with filled porous media and 0.5% Al2O3). In the second step, the maximum energy efficiency of SCCHP systems with fourteen steps of simulation are shown in Figure 7.

In the second step, where 0.1, −0.6% of the nanofluids were added, it is found that 0.5% leads to the highest energy and exergy efficiency enhancement in solar collectors and SCCHP systems. Using concentrations more than 0.5% leads to sediment in the solar collector’s pipe and a decrease of porosity in the pipe [73]. According to Figure 7, maximum energy and exergy efficiencies of SCCHP are achieved in Step 12. In this step energy efficiency is 54.49% and exergy efficiency is 18.29%. In steps 13 and 14, with increasing concentration of CUO and Al2O3 nanofluid solution in porous materials, decreasing of energy and exergy efficiency of PTC and SCCHP system at the same time happened. This decrease in efficiency is due to the formation of sediment in the porous material. Calculations and simulations have shown that porous materials more than 0.5% nanofluids inside the collector pipe cause sediment and disturb the porosity of porous materials and pressure drop and reduce the coefficient of performance of the cogeneration system. Most experience showed that CUO and AL2O3 nanofluids with less than 0.6% percent solution are used in the investigation on the solar collectors at low temperatures and discharges [74]. One of the important points of this research is that the best ratio of nanofluids in the solar collector with a low temperature is 0.5% (AL2O3 and CUO); with this replacement, the cost of solar collectors and SCCHP cycle is reduced.

5. Conclusion and Future Directions

In the present study, ways for increasing the efficiency of solar collectors in order to enhance the efficiency of the SCCHP cycle are examined. The research is aimed at adding both porous materials and nanofluids for estimating the best ratio of nanofluid for enhanced solar collector and protecting sedimentation in porous media. By adding porous materials (copper foam with porosity of 95%) and 0.5% nanofluids together, high efficiency in solar parabolic collectors can be achieved. The novelty in this research is the addition of both nanofluids and porous materials and calculating the best ratio for preventing sedimentation and pressure drop in solar collector’s pipe. In this study, it was observed that, by adding 0.5% of AL2O3 nanofluid in working fluids, the energy efficiency of PTC rises to 74.19% and exergy efficiency is grown up to 32.6%. In SCCHP cycle, energy efficiency is 54.49% and exergy efficiency is 18.29%.

In this research, parabolic solar collectors fully filled by porous media (copper foam with a porosity of 95) are investigated. In the next step, parabolic solar collectors in the SCCHP cycle were simultaneously filled by porous media and different percentages of Al2O3 and CuO nanofluid. At this step, values of 0.1% to 0.6% of each nanofluid were added to the working fluid, and the efficiency of the energy and exergy of the collectors and the SCCHP cycle were determined. In this case, nanofluid and the porous media were used together in the solar collector and maximum efficiency achieved. 0.5% of both nanofluids were used to achieve the biggest efficiency enhancement.

In the present study, as expected, the highest efficiency is for the parabolic solar collector fully filled by porous material (copper foam with a porosity of 95%) and 0.5% Al2O3. Results of the present study are as follows:(1)The average enhancement of collectors’ efficiency using porous media and nanofluids is 28%.(2)Solutions with 0.1 to 0.5% of nanofluids (CuO and Al2O3) are used to prevent collectors from sediment occurrence in porous media.(3)Collector of solar cogeneration cycles that is enhanced by both porous media and nanofluid has higher efficiency, and the stability of output temperature is more as well.(4)By using 0.6% of the nanofluids in the enhanced parabolic solar collectors with copper porous materials, sedimentation occurs and makes a high-pressure drop in the solar collector’s pipe which causes decrease in energy efficiency.(5)Average enhancement of SCCHP cycle efficiency is enhanced by both porous media and nanofluid 13%.

Nomenclature

:Solar radiation
a:Heat transfer augmentation coefficient
A:Solar collector area
Bf:Basic fluid
:Specific heat capacity of the nanofluid
F:Constant of air dilution
:Thermal conductivity of the nanofluid
:Thermal conductivity of the basic fluid
:Viscosity of the nanofluid
:Viscosity of the basic fluid
:Collector efficiency
:Collector energy receives
:Auxiliary boiler heat
:Expander energy
:Gas energy
:Screw expander work
:Cooling load, in kilowatts
:Heating load, in kilowatts
:Solar radiation energy on collector, in Joule
:Sanitary hot water load
Np:Nanoparticle
:Energy efficiency
:Heat exchanger efficiency
:Sun exergy
:Collector exergy
:Natural gas exergy
:Expander exergy
:Cooling exergy
:Heating exergy
:Exergy efficiency
:Steam mass flow rate
:Hot water mass flow rate
:Specific heat capacity of water
:Power output form by the screw expander
Tam:Average ambient temperature
:Density of the mixture.

Greek symbols

ρ:Density
ϕ:Nanoparticles volume fraction
β:Ratio of the nanolayer thickness.

Abbreviations

CCHP:Combined cooling, heating, and power
EES:Engineering equation solver.

Data Availability

For this study, data were generated by CARRIER software for the average electrical, heating, and cooling load of a residential building with 600 m2 in the city of Zahedan, Iran.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Acknowledgments

This work was partially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China under Contract no. 71761030 and Natural Science Foundation of Inner Mongolia under Contract no. 2019LH07003.

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Forming characteristics and control method of weld bead for GMAW on curved surface

곡면에 GMAW용 용접 비드의 형성 특성 및 제어 방법

Forming characteristics and control method of weld bead for GMAW on curved surface

The International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology (2021)Cite this article

Abstract

곡면에서 GMAW 기반 적층 가공의 용접 성형 특성은 중력의 영향을 크게 받습니다. 성형면의 경사각이 크면 혹 비드(hump bead)와 같은 심각한 결함이 발생합니다.

본 논문에서는 양생면에서 용접 비드 형성의 형성 특성과 제어 방법을 연구하기 위해 용접 용융 풀 유동 역학의 전산 모델을 수립하고 제안된 모델을 검증하기 위해 증착 실험을 수행하였습니다.

결과는 용접 비드 경사각(α)이 증가함에 따라 역류의 속도가 증가하고 상향 용접의 경우 α > 60°일 때 불규칙한 험프 결함이 나타나는 것으로 나타났습니다.

상부 과잉 액체의 하향 압착력과 하부 상향 유동의 반동력과 표면장력 사이의 상호작용은 용접 혹 형성의 주요 요인이었다. 하향 용접의 경우 양호한 형태를 얻을 수 있었으며, 용접 비드 경사각이 증가함에 따라 용접 높이는 감소하고 용접 폭은 증가하였습니다.

하향 및 상향 용접을 위한 곡면의 용융 거동 및 성형 특성을 기반으로 험프 결함을 제어하기 위해 위브 용접을 통한 증착 방법을 제안하였습니다.

성형 궤적의 변화로 인해 용접 방향의 중력 성분이 크게 감소하여 용융 풀 흐름의 안정성이 향상되었으며 복잡한 표면에서 안정적이고 일관된 용접 비드를 얻는 데 유리했습니다.

하향 용접과 상향 용접 사이의 단일 비드의 치수 편차는 7% 이내였으며 하향 및 상향 혼합 혼합 비드 중첩 증착에서 비드의 변동 편차는 0.45로 GMAW 기반 적층 제조 공정에서 허용될 수 있었습니다.

이러한 발견은 GMAW를 기반으로 하는 곡선 적층 적층 제조의 용접 비드 형성 제어에 기여했습니다.

The weld forming characteristics of GMAW-based additive manufacturing on curved surface are dramatically influenced by gravity. Large inclined angle of the forming surface would lead to severe defects such as hump bead. In this paper, a computational model of welding molten pool flow dynamics was established to research the forming characteristic and control method of weld bead forming on cured surface, and deposition experiments were conducted to verify the proposed model. Results indicated that the velocity of backward flows increased with the increase of weld bead tilt angle (α) and irregular hump defects appeared when α > 60° for upward welding. The interaction between the downward squeezing force of the excess liquid at the top and the recoil force of the upward flow at the bottom and the surface tension were primary factors for welding hump formation. For downward welding, a good morphology shape could be obtained, and the weld height decreased and the weld width increased with the increase of weld bead tilt angle. Based on the molten behaviors and forming characteristics on curved surface for downward and upward welding, the method of deposition with weave welding was proposed to control hump defects. Gravity component in the welding direction was significantly reduced due to the change of forming trajectory, which improved the stability of the molten pool flow and was beneficial to obtain stable and consistent weld bead on complex surface. The dimensional deviations of the single bead between downward and upward welding were within 7% and the fluctuation deviation of the bead in multi-bead overlapping deposition with mixing downward and upward welding was 0.45, which could be acceptable in GMAW-based additive manufacturing process. These findings contributed to the weld bead forming control of curve layered additive manufacturing based on GMAW.

Keywords

  • Molten pool behaviors
  • GMAW-based WAAM
  • Deposition with weave welding
  • Welding on curved surface
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Figure 2. (a) Scanning electron microscopy images of Ti6Al4V powder particles and (b) simulated powder bed using discrete element modelling

Laser Powder Bed에서 Laser Drilling에 의한 Keyhole 형성 Ti6Al4V 생체 의학 합금의 융합: 메조스코픽 전산유체역학 시뮬레이션 대 경험적 검증을 사용한 수학적 모델링

Keyhole Formation by Laser Drilling in Laser Powder Bed Fusion of Ti6Al4V Biomedical Alloy: Mesoscopic Computational Fluid Dynamics Simulation versus Mathematical Modelling Using Empirical Validation

Asif Ur Rehman 1,2,3,*
,† , Muhammad Arif Mahmood 4,*
,† , Fatih Pitir 1
, Metin Uymaz Salamci 2,3
,
Andrei C. Popescu 4 and Ion N. Mihailescu 4

Abstract

LPBF(Laser Powder Bed fusion) 공정에서 작동 조건은 열 분포를 기반으로 레이저 유도 키홀 영역을 결정하는 데 필수적입니다. 얕은 구멍과 깊은 구멍으로 분류되는 이러한 영역은 LPBF 프로세스에서 확률과 결함 형성 강도를 제어합니다.

LPBF 프로세스의 핵심 구멍을 연구하고 제어하기 위해 수학적 및 CFD(전산 유체 역학) 모델이 제공됩니다. CFD의 경우 이산 요소 모델링 기법을 사용한 유체 체적 방법이 사용되었으며, 분말 베드 보이드 및 표면에 의한 레이저 빔 흡수를 포함하여 수학적 모델이 개발되었습니다.

동적 용융 풀 거동을 자세히 살펴봅니다. 실험적, CFD 시뮬레이션 및 분석적 컴퓨팅 결과 간에 정량적 비교가 수행되어 좋은 일치를 얻습니다.

LPBF에서 레이저 조사 영역 주변의 온도는 높은 내열성과 분말 입자 사이의 공기로 인해 분말층 주변에 비해 급격히 상승하여 레이저 횡방향 열파의 이동이 느려집니다. LPBF에서 키홀은 에너지 밀도에 의해 제어되는 얕고 깊은 키홀 모드로 분류될 수 있습니다. 에너지 밀도를 높이면 얕은 키홀 구멍 모드가 깊은 키홀 구멍 모드로 바뀝니다.

깊은 키홀 구멍의 에너지 밀도는 다중 반사와 키홀 구멍 내의 2차 반사 빔의 집중으로 인해 더 높아져 재료가 빠르게 기화됩니다.

깊은 키홀 구멍 모드에서는 온도 분포가 높기 때문에 액체 재료가 기화 온도에 가까우므로 얕은 키홀 구멍보다 구멍이 형성될 확률이 훨씬 높습니다. 온도가 급격히 상승하면 재료 밀도가 급격히 떨어지므로 비열과 융해 잠열로 인해 유체 부피가 증가합니다.

그 대가로 표면 장력을 낮추고 용융 풀 균일성에 영향을 미칩니다.

In the laser powder bed fusion (LPBF) process, the operating conditions are essential in determining laser-induced keyhole regimes based on the thermal distribution. These regimes, classified into shallow and deep keyholes, control the probability and defects formation intensity in the LPBF process. To study and control the keyhole in the LPBF process, mathematical and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) models are presented. For CFD, the volume of fluid method with the discrete element modeling technique was used, while a mathematical model was developed by including the laser beam absorption by the powder bed voids and surface. The dynamic melt pool behavior is explored in detail. Quantitative comparisons are made among experimental, CFD simulation and analytical computing results leading to a good correspondence. In LPBF, the temperature around the laser irradiation zone rises rapidly compared to the surroundings in the powder layer due to the high thermal resistance and the air between the powder particles, resulting in a slow travel of laser transverse heat waves. In LPBF, the keyhole can be classified into shallow and deep keyhole mode, controlled by the energy density. Increasing the energy density, the shallow keyhole mode transforms into the deep keyhole mode. The energy density in a deep keyhole is higher due to the multiple reflections and concentrations of secondary reflected beams within the keyhole, causing the material to vaporize quickly. Due to an elevated temperature distribution in deep keyhole mode, the probability of pores forming is much higher than in a shallow keyhole as the liquid material is close to the vaporization temperature. When the temperature increases rapidly, the material density drops quickly, thus, raising the fluid volume due to the specific heat and fusion latent heat. In return, this lowers the surface tension and affects the melt pool uniformity.

Keywords: laser powder bed fusion; computational fluid dynamics; analytical modelling; shallow
and deep keyhole modes; experimental correlation

Figure 1. Powder bed schematic with voids.
Figure 1. Powder bed schematic with voids.
Figure 2. (a) Scanning electron microscopy images of Ti6Al4V powder particles and (b) simulated powder bed using discrete element modelling
Figure 2. (a) Scanning electron microscopy images of Ti6Al4V powder particles and (b) simulated powder bed using discrete element modelling
Figure 3. Temperature field contour formation at various time intervals (a) 0.695 ms, (b) 0.795 ms, (c) 0.995 ms and (d) 1.3 ms.
Figure 3. Temperature field contour formation at various time intervals (a) 0.695 ms, (b) 0.795 ms, (c) 0.995 ms and (d) 1.3 ms.
Figure 4. Detailed view of shallow depth melt mode with temperature field at 0.695 ms
Figure 4. Detailed view of shallow depth melt mode with temperature field at 0.695 ms
Figure 5. Melt flow stream traces formation at various time intervals (a) 0.695 ms, (b) 0.795 ms, (c) 0.995 ms and (d) 1.3 ms
Figure 5. Melt flow stream traces formation at various time intervals (a) 0.695 ms, (b) 0.795 ms, (c) 0.995 ms and (d) 1.3 ms
Figure 6. Density evolution of the melt pool at various time intervals (a) 0.695 ms, (b) 0.795 ms, (c) 0.995 ms and (d) 1.3 ms.
Figure 6. Density evolution of the melt pool at various time intervals (a) 0.695 ms, (b) 0.795 ms, (c) 0.995 ms and (d) 1.3 ms.
Figure 7. Un-melted and melted regions at different time intervals (a) 0.695 ms, (b) 0.795 ms, (c) 0.995 ms and (d) 1.3 ms
Figure 7. Un-melted and melted regions at different time intervals (a) 0.695 ms, (b) 0.795 ms, (c) 0.995 ms and (d) 1.3 ms
Figure 8. Transformation from shallow depth melt flow to deep keyhole formation when laser power increased from (a) 170 W to (b) 200 W
Figure 8. Transformation from shallow depth melt flow to deep keyhole formation when laser power increased from (a) 170 W to (b) 200 W
Figure 9. Stream traces and laser beam multiple reflections in deep keyhole melt flow mode
Figure 9. Stream traces and laser beam multiple reflections in deep keyhole melt flow mode
Figure 10. A comparison between analytical and CFD simulation results for peak thermal distribution value in the deep keyhole formation
Figure 10. A comparison between analytical and CFD simulation results for peak thermal distribution value in the deep keyhole formation
Figure 11. A comparison among experiments [49], CFD and analytical simulations for deep keyhole top width and bottom width
Figure 11. A comparison among experiments [49], CFD and analytical simulations for deep keyhole top width and bottom width

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Flow velocity profiles for canals with a depth of 3 m and flow velocities of 5–5.3 m/s.

Optimization Algorithms and Engineering: Recent Advances and Applications

Mahdi Feizbahr,1 Navid Tonekaboni,2Guang-Jun Jiang,3,4 and Hong-Xia Chen3,4Show moreAcademic Editor: Mohammad YazdiReceived08 Apr 2021Revised18 Jun 2021Accepted17 Jul 2021Published11 Aug 2021

Abstract

Vegetation along the river increases the roughness and reduces the average flow velocity, reduces flow energy, and changes the flow velocity profile in the cross section of the river. Many canals and rivers in nature are covered with vegetation during the floods. Canal’s roughness is strongly affected by plants and therefore it has a great effect on flow resistance during flood. Roughness resistance against the flow due to the plants depends on the flow conditions and plant, so the model should simulate the current velocity by considering the effects of velocity, depth of flow, and type of vegetation along the canal. Total of 48 models have been simulated to investigate the effect of roughness in the canal. The results indicated that, by enhancing the velocity, the effect of vegetation in decreasing the bed velocity is negligible, while when the current has lower speed, the effect of vegetation on decreasing the bed velocity is obviously considerable.


강의 식생은 거칠기를 증가시키고 평균 유속을 감소시키며, 유속 에너지를 감소시키고 강의 단면에서 유속 프로파일을 변경합니다. 자연의 많은 운하와 강은 홍수 동안 초목으로 덮여 있습니다. 운하의 조도는 식물의 영향을 많이 받으므로 홍수시 유동저항에 큰 영향을 미칩니다. 식물로 인한 흐름에 대한 거칠기 저항은 흐름 조건 및 식물에 따라 다르므로 모델은 유속, 흐름 깊이 및 운하를 따라 식생 유형의 영향을 고려하여 현재 속도를 시뮬레이션해야 합니다. 근관의 거칠기의 영향을 조사하기 위해 총 48개의 모델이 시뮬레이션되었습니다. 결과는 유속을 높임으로써 유속을 감소시키는 식생의 영향은 무시할 수 있는 반면, 해류가 더 낮은 유속일 때 유속을 감소시키는 식생의 영향은 분명히 상당함을 나타냈다.

1. Introduction

Considering the impact of each variable is a very popular field within the analytical and statistical methods and intelligent systems [114]. This can help research for better modeling considering the relation of variables or interaction of them toward reaching a better condition for the objective function in control and engineering [1527]. Consequently, it is necessary to study the effects of the passive factors on the active domain [2836]. Because of the effect of vegetation on reducing the discharge capacity of rivers [37], pruning plants was necessary to improve the condition of rivers. One of the important effects of vegetation in river protection is the action of roots, which cause soil consolidation and soil structure improvement and, by enhancing the shear strength of soil, increase the resistance of canal walls against the erosive force of water. The outer limbs of the plant increase the roughness of the canal walls and reduce the flow velocity and deplete the flow energy in vicinity of the walls. Vegetation by reducing the shear stress of the canal bed reduces flood discharge and sedimentation in the intervals between vegetation and increases the stability of the walls [3841].

One of the main factors influencing the speed, depth, and extent of flood in this method is Manning’s roughness coefficient. On the other hand, soil cover [42], especially vegetation, is one of the most determining factors in Manning’s roughness coefficient. Therefore, it is expected that those seasonal changes in the vegetation of the region will play an important role in the calculated value of Manning’s roughness coefficient and ultimately in predicting the flood wave behavior [4345]. The roughness caused by plants’ resistance to flood current depends on the flow and plant conditions. Flow conditions include depth and velocity of the plant, and plant conditions include plant type, hardness or flexibility, dimensions, density, and shape of the plant [46]. In general, the issue discussed in this research is the optimization of flood-induced flow in canals by considering the effect of vegetation-induced roughness. Therefore, the effect of plants on the roughness coefficient and canal transmission coefficient and in consequence the flow depth should be evaluated [4748].

Current resistance is generally known by its roughness coefficient. The equation that is mainly used in this field is Manning equation. The ratio of shear velocity to average current velocity  is another form of current resistance. The reason for using the  ratio is that it is dimensionless and has a strong theoretical basis. The reason for using Manning roughness coefficient is its pervasiveness. According to Freeman et al. [49], the Manning roughness coefficient for plants was calculated according to the Kouwen and Unny [50] method for incremental resistance. This method involves increasing the roughness for various surface and plant irregularities. Manning’s roughness coefficient has all the factors affecting the resistance of the canal. Therefore, the appropriate way to more accurately estimate this coefficient is to know the factors affecting this coefficient [51].

To calculate the flow rate, velocity, and depth of flow in canals as well as flood and sediment estimation, it is important to evaluate the flow resistance. To determine the flow resistance in open ducts, Manning, Chézy, and Darcy–Weisbach relations are used [52]. In these relations, there are parameters such as Manning’s roughness coefficient (n), Chézy roughness coefficient (C), and Darcy–Weisbach coefficient (f). All three of these coefficients are a kind of flow resistance coefficient that is widely used in the equations governing flow in rivers [53].

The three relations that express the relationship between the average flow velocity (V) and the resistance and geometric and hydraulic coefficients of the canal are as follows:where nf, and c are Manning, Darcy–Weisbach, and Chézy coefficients, respectively. V = average flow velocity, R = hydraulic radius, Sf = slope of energy line, which in uniform flow is equal to the slope of the canal bed,  = gravitational acceleration, and Kn is a coefficient whose value is equal to 1 in the SI system and 1.486 in the English system. The coefficients of resistance in equations (1) to (3) are related as follows:

Based on the boundary layer theory, the flow resistance for rough substrates is determined from the following general relation:where f = Darcy–Weisbach coefficient of friction, y = flow depth, Ks = bed roughness size, and A = constant coefficient.

On the other hand, the relationship between the Darcy–Weisbach coefficient of friction and the shear velocity of the flow is as follows:

By using equation (6), equation (5) is converted as follows:

Investigation on the effect of vegetation arrangement on shear velocity of flow in laboratory conditions showed that, with increasing the shear Reynolds number (), the numerical value of the  ratio also increases; in other words the amount of roughness coefficient increases with a slight difference in the cases without vegetation, checkered arrangement, and cross arrangement, respectively [54].

Roughness in river vegetation is simulated in mathematical models with a variable floor slope flume by different densities and discharges. The vegetation considered submerged in the bed of the flume. Results showed that, with increasing vegetation density, canal roughness and flow shear speed increase and with increasing flow rate and depth, Manning’s roughness coefficient decreases. Factors affecting the roughness caused by vegetation include the effect of plant density and arrangement on flow resistance, the effect of flow velocity on flow resistance, and the effect of depth [4555].

One of the works that has been done on the effect of vegetation on the roughness coefficient is Darby [56] study, which investigates a flood wave model that considers all the effects of vegetation on the roughness coefficient. There are currently two methods for estimating vegetation roughness. One method is to add the thrust force effect to Manning’s equation [475758] and the other method is to increase the canal bed roughness (Manning-Strickler coefficient) [455961]. These two methods provide acceptable results in models designed to simulate floodplain flow. Wang et al. [62] simulate the floodplain with submerged vegetation using these two methods and to increase the accuracy of the results, they suggested using the effective height of the plant under running water instead of using the actual height of the plant. Freeman et al. [49] provided equations for determining the coefficient of vegetation roughness under different conditions. Lee et al. [63] proposed a method for calculating the Manning coefficient using the flow velocity ratio at different depths. Much research has been done on the Manning roughness coefficient in rivers, and researchers [496366] sought to obtain a specific number for n to use in river engineering. However, since the depth and geometric conditions of rivers are completely variable in different places, the values of Manning roughness coefficient have changed subsequently, and it has not been possible to choose a fixed number. In river engineering software, the Manning roughness coefficient is determined only for specific and constant conditions or normal flow. Lee et al. [63] stated that seasonal conditions, density, and type of vegetation should also be considered. Hydraulic roughness and Manning roughness coefficient n of the plant were obtained by estimating the total Manning roughness coefficient from the matching of the measured water surface curve and water surface height. The following equation is used for the flow surface curve:where  is the depth of water change, S0 is the slope of the canal floor, Sf is the slope of the energy line, and Fr is the Froude number which is obtained from the following equation:where D is the characteristic length of the canal. Flood flow velocity is one of the important parameters of flood waves, which is very important in calculating the water level profile and energy consumption. In the cases where there are many limitations for researchers due to the wide range of experimental dimensions and the variety of design parameters, the use of numerical methods that are able to estimate the rest of the unknown results with acceptable accuracy is economically justified.

FLOW-3D software uses Finite Difference Method (FDM) for numerical solution of two-dimensional and three-dimensional flow. This software is dedicated to computational fluid dynamics (CFD) and is provided by Flow Science [67]. The flow is divided into networks with tubular cells. For each cell there are values of dependent variables and all variables are calculated in the center of the cell, except for the velocity, which is calculated at the center of the cell. In this software, two numerical techniques have been used for geometric simulation, FAVOR™ (Fractional-Area-Volume-Obstacle-Representation) and the VOF (Volume-of-Fluid) method. The equations used at this model for this research include the principle of mass survival and the magnitude of motion as follows. The fluid motion equations in three dimensions, including the Navier–Stokes equations with some additional terms, are as follows:where  are mass accelerations in the directions xyz and  are viscosity accelerations in the directions xyz and are obtained from the following equations:

Shear stresses  in equation (11) are obtained from the following equations:

The standard model is used for high Reynolds currents, but in this model, RNG theory allows the analytical differential formula to be used for the effective viscosity that occurs at low Reynolds numbers. Therefore, the RNG model can be used for low and high Reynolds currents.

Weather changes are high and this affects many factors continuously. The presence of vegetation in any area reduces the velocity of surface flows and prevents soil erosion, so vegetation will have a significant impact on reducing destructive floods. One of the methods of erosion protection in floodplain watersheds is the use of biological methods. The presence of vegetation in watersheds reduces the flow rate during floods and prevents soil erosion. The external organs of plants increase the roughness and decrease the velocity of water flow and thus reduce its shear stress energy. One of the important factors with which the hydraulic resistance of plants is expressed is the roughness coefficient. Measuring the roughness coefficient of plants and investigating their effect on reducing velocity and shear stress of flow is of special importance.

Roughness coefficients in canals are affected by two main factors, namely, flow conditions and vegetation characteristics [68]. So far, much research has been done on the effect of the roughness factor created by vegetation, but the issue of plant density has received less attention. For this purpose, this study was conducted to investigate the effect of vegetation density on flow velocity changes.

In a study conducted using a software model on three density modes in the submerged state effect on flow velocity changes in 48 different modes was investigated (Table 1).Table 1 The studied models.

The number of cells used in this simulation is equal to 1955888 cells. The boundary conditions were introduced to the model as a constant speed and depth (Figure 1). At the output boundary, due to the presence of supercritical current, no parameter for the current is considered. Absolute roughness for floors and walls was introduced to the model (Figure 1). In this case, the flow was assumed to be nonviscous and air entry into the flow was not considered. After  seconds, this model reached a convergence accuracy of .

Figure 1 The simulated model and its boundary conditions.

Due to the fact that it is not possible to model the vegetation in FLOW-3D software, in this research, the vegetation of small soft plants was studied so that Manning’s coefficients can be entered into the canal bed in the form of roughness coefficients obtained from the studies of Chow [69] in similar conditions. In practice, in such modeling, the effect of plant height is eliminated due to the small height of herbaceous plants, and modeling can provide relatively acceptable results in these conditions.

48 models with input velocities proportional to the height of the regular semihexagonal canal were considered to create supercritical conditions. Manning coefficients were applied based on Chow [69] studies in order to control the canal bed. Speed profiles were drawn and discussed.

Any control and simulation system has some inputs that we should determine to test any technology [7077]. Determination and true implementation of such parameters is one of the key steps of any simulation [237881] and computing procedure [8286]. The input current is created by applying the flow rate through the VFR (Volume Flow Rate) option and the output flow is considered Output and for other borders the Symmetry option is considered.

Simulation of the models and checking their action and responses and observing how a process behaves is one of the accepted methods in engineering and science [8788]. For verification of FLOW-3D software, the results of computer simulations are compared with laboratory measurements and according to the values of computational error, convergence error, and the time required for convergence, the most appropriate option for real-time simulation is selected (Figures 2 and 3 ).

Figure 2 Modeling the plant with cylindrical tubes at the bottom of the canal.

Figure 3 Velocity profiles in positions 2 and 5.

The canal is 7 meters long, 0.5 meters wide, and 0.8 meters deep. This test was used to validate the application of the software to predict the flow rate parameters. In this experiment, instead of using the plant, cylindrical pipes were used in the bottom of the canal.

The conditions of this modeling are similar to the laboratory conditions and the boundary conditions used in the laboratory were used for numerical modeling. The critical flow enters the simulation model from the upstream boundary, so in the upstream boundary conditions, critical velocity and depth are considered. The flow at the downstream boundary is supercritical, so no parameters are applied to the downstream boundary.

The software well predicts the process of changing the speed profile in the open canal along with the considered obstacles. The error in the calculated speed values can be due to the complexity of the flow and the interaction of the turbulence caused by the roughness of the floor with the turbulence caused by the three-dimensional cycles in the hydraulic jump. As a result, the software is able to predict the speed distribution in open canals.

2. Modeling Results

After analyzing the models, the results were shown in graphs (Figures 414 ). The total number of experiments in this study was 48 due to the limitations of modeling.(a)
(a)(b)
(b)(c)
(c)(d)
(d)(a)
(a)(b)
(b)(c)
(c)(d)
(d)Figure 4 Flow velocity profiles for canals with a depth of 1 m and flow velocities of 3–3.3 m/s. Canal with a depth of 1 meter and a flow velocity of (a) 3 meters per second, (b) 3.1 meters per second, (c) 3.2 meters per second, and (d) 3.3 meters per second.

Figure 5 Canal diagram with a depth of 1 meter and a flow rate of 3 meters per second.

Figure 6 Canal diagram with a depth of 1 meter and a flow rate of 3.1 meters per second.

Figure 7 Canal diagram with a depth of 1 meter and a flow rate of 3.2 meters per second.

Figure 8 Canal diagram with a depth of 1 meter and a flow rate of 3.3 meters per second.(a)
(a)(b)
(b)(c)
(c)(d)
(d)(a)
(a)(b)
(b)(c)
(c)(d)
(d)Figure 9 Flow velocity profiles for canals with a depth of 2 m and flow velocities of 4–4.3 m/s. Canal with a depth of 2 meters and a flow rate of (a) 4 meters per second, (b) 4.1 meters per second, (c) 4.2 meters per second, and (d) 4.3 meters per second.

Figure 10 Canal diagram with a depth of 2 meters and a flow rate of 4 meters per second.

Figure 11 Canal diagram with a depth of 2 meters and a flow rate of 4.1 meters per second.

Figure 12 Canal diagram with a depth of 2 meters and a flow rate of 4.2 meters per second.

Figure 13 Canal diagram with a depth of 2 meters and a flow rate of 4.3 meters per second.(a)
(a)(b)
(b)(c)
(c)(d)
(d)(a)
(a)(b)
(b)(c)
(c)(d)
(d)Figure 14 Flow velocity profiles for canals with a depth of 3 m and flow velocities of 5–5.3 m/s. Canal with a depth of 2 meters and a flow rate of (a) 4 meters per second, (b) 4.1 meters per second, (c) 4.2 meters per second, and (d) 4.3 meters per second.

To investigate the effects of roughness with flow velocity, the trend of flow velocity changes at different depths and with supercritical flow to a Froude number proportional to the depth of the section has been obtained.

According to the velocity profiles of Figure 5, it can be seen that, with the increasing of Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases.

According to Figures 5 to 8, it can be found that, with increasing the Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases. But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of the models 1 to 12, which can be justified by increasing the speed and of course increasing the Froude number.

According to Figure 10, we see that, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases.

According to Figure 11, we see that, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases. But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of Figures 510, which can be justified by increasing the speed and, of course, increasing the Froude number.

With increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases (Figure 12). But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of the higher models (Figures 58 and 1011), which can be justified by increasing the speed and, of course, increasing the Froude number.

According to Figure 13, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases. But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of Figures 5 to 12, which can be justified by increasing the speed and, of course, increasing the Froude number.

According to Figure 15, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases.

Figure 15 Canal diagram with a depth of 3 meters and a flow rate of 5 meters per second.

According to Figure 16, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases. But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of the higher model, which can be justified by increasing the speed and, of course, increasing the Froude number.

Figure 16 Canal diagram with a depth of 3 meters and a flow rate of 5.1 meters per second.

According to Figure 17, it is clear that, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases. But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of the higher models, which can be justified by increasing the speed and, of course, increasing the Froude number.

Figure 17 Canal diagram with a depth of 3 meters and a flow rate of 5.2 meters per second.

According to Figure 18, with increasing Manning’s coefficient, the canal bed speed decreases. But this deceleration is more noticeable than the deceleration of the higher models, which can be justified by increasing the speed and, of course, increasing the Froude number.

Figure 18 Canal diagram with a depth of 3 meters and a flow rate of 5.3 meters per second.

According to Figure 19, it can be seen that the vegetation placed in front of the flow input velocity has negligible effect on the reduction of velocity, which of course can be justified due to the flexibility of the vegetation. The only unusual thing is the unexpected decrease in floor speed of 3 m/s compared to higher speeds.(a)
(a)(b)
(b)(c)
(c)(a)
(a)(b)
(b)(c)
(c)Figure 19 Comparison of velocity profiles with the same plant densities (depth 1 m). Comparison of velocity profiles with (a) plant densities of 25%, depth 1 m; (b) plant densities of 50%, depth 1 m; and (c) plant densities of 75%, depth 1 m.

According to Figure 20, by increasing the speed of vegetation, the effect of vegetation on reducing the flow rate becomes more noticeable. And the role of input current does not have much effect in reducing speed.(a)
(a)(b)
(b)(c)
(c)(a)
(a)(b)
(b)(c)
(c)Figure 20 Comparison of velocity profiles with the same plant densities (depth 2 m). Comparison of velocity profiles with (a) plant densities of 25%, depth 2 m; (b) plant densities of 50%, depth 2 m; and (c) plant densities of 75%, depth 2 m.

According to Figure 21, it can be seen that, with increasing speed, the effect of vegetation on reducing the bed flow rate becomes more noticeable and the role of the input current does not have much effect. In general, it can be seen that, by increasing the speed of the input current, the slope of the profiles increases from the bed to the water surface and due to the fact that, in software, the roughness coefficient applies to the channel floor only in the boundary conditions, this can be perfectly justified. Of course, it can be noted that, due to the flexible conditions of the vegetation of the bed, this modeling can show acceptable results for such grasses in the canal floor. In the next directions, we may try application of swarm-based optimization methods for modeling and finding the most effective factors in this research [27815188994]. In future, we can also apply the simulation logic and software of this research for other domains such as power engineering [9599].(a)
(a)(b)
(b)(c)
(c)(a)
(a)(b)
(b)(c)
(c)Figure 21 Comparison of velocity profiles with the same plant densities (depth 3 m). Comparison of velocity profiles with (a) plant densities of 25%, depth 3 m; (b) plant densities of 50%, depth 3 m; and (c) plant densities of 75%, depth 3 m.

3. Conclusion

The effects of vegetation on the flood canal were investigated by numerical modeling with FLOW-3D software. After analyzing the results, the following conclusions were reached:(i)Increasing the density of vegetation reduces the velocity of the canal floor but has no effect on the velocity of the canal surface.(ii)Increasing the Froude number is directly related to increasing the speed of the canal floor.(iii)In the canal with a depth of one meter, a sudden increase in speed can be observed from the lowest speed and higher speed, which is justified by the sudden increase in Froude number.(iv)As the inlet flow rate increases, the slope of the profiles from the bed to the water surface increases.(v)By reducing the Froude number, the effect of vegetation on reducing the flow bed rate becomes more noticeable. And the input velocity in reducing the velocity of the canal floor does not have much effect.(vi)At a flow rate between 3 and 3.3 meters per second due to the shallow depth of the canal and the higher landing number a more critical area is observed in which the flow bed velocity in this area is between 2.86 and 3.1 m/s.(vii)Due to the critical flow velocity and the slight effect of the roughness of the horseshoe vortex floor, it is not visible and is only partially observed in models 1-2-3 and 21.(viii)As the flow rate increases, the effect of vegetation on the rate of bed reduction decreases.(ix)In conditions where less current intensity is passing, vegetation has a greater effect on reducing current intensity and energy consumption increases.(x)In the case of using the flow rate of 0.8 cubic meters per second, the velocity distribution and flow regime show about 20% more energy consumption than in the case of using the flow rate of 1.3 cubic meters per second.

Nomenclature

n:Manning’s roughness coefficient
C:Chézy roughness coefficient
f:Darcy–Weisbach coefficient
V:Flow velocity
R:Hydraulic radius
g:Gravitational acceleration
y:Flow depth
Ks:Bed roughness
A:Constant coefficient
:Reynolds number
y/∂x:Depth of water change
S0:Slope of the canal floor
Sf:Slope of energy line
Fr:Froude number
D:Characteristic length of the canal
G:Mass acceleration
:Shear stresses.

Data Availability

All data are included within the paper.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Acknowledgments

This work was partially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China under Contract no. 71761030 and Natural Science Foundation of Inner Mongolia under Contract no. 2019LH07003.

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