Temperature-dependent Impact Properties of 3D Printed 15-5 Stainless Steel

Sugrim Sagar, Purdue University


Since the conception of three dimensional (3D) printing circa 40 years ago, there has been the proliferation of several additive manufacturing (AM) technologies that enable its use in everyday applications such as aerospace, medicine, military, oil and gas and infrastructure. In order to improve its applicability and growth, 3D printed materials are subjected to the same or even higher levels of scrutiny on its mechanical behavior as the conventionally manufactured counterpart. One of the most important mechanical properties is toughness or the ability of a material to undergo large strain prior to fracture when loaded. The toughness of a material can be correlated to its impact energy or the increase in internal energy due to impact. In this study, the impact properties, including the toughness of 3D printed 15-5 stainless steel were investigated at low temperature (77 K), room temperature (298 K) and high temperature (723 K) using experimental and numerical modeling of the Charpy impact test. In addition, ballistic impact simulations were performed to determine the applicability of 3D printed 15-5 stainless steel in the defense industry. The 15-5 stainless steel specimens were printed (horizontal-build) using the direct metal laser sintering (DMLS) technique, cooled or heated to the specified temperature, then tested in accordance with the ASTM E23-2016b [1] standard. The Johnson-Cook (J-C) phenomenological material model and fracture parameters were used in the numerical modeling. The cross-sectional microstructures of surfaces and impact energies of the Charpy impact test were examined. For the ballistic impact simulations, a 3D printed 15-5 stainless steel typical plate was investigated at the same temperatures as the Charpy impact test. A typical missile using the J-C properties at room temperature (298 K) was assigned an initial velocity of 300 ms-1 for each plate temperature. The fracture surface investigation (microsurface analysis as well as visual inspection) and impact energy values of the Charpy impact test show that the 3D printed 15-5 stainless steel exhibited brittle behavior at low and room temperatures, but transitioned into a more ductile behavior at high temperature. At 77 K, 298 K and 723 K, the experimental Charpy impact test results were 0.00 J/cm2, 6.78±4.07 J/cm 2 and 50.84±3.39 J/cm 2 respectively; whereas the simulated impact energy were 1.05 J/cm2, 10.46 J/cm2 and 47.07 J/cm2 respectively. Hence, the impact energy for the experimental and numerical simulations were in good agreement; especially at higher temperatures. Consistent with the results from the Charpy impact test, the ballistic impact simulations show an increase in the impact energy, elastic plastic strain and deflection of the plate with an increase in temperature indicating brittle-to-ductile behavior. The high exit velocity at low and room temperature may not make the plate attractive in defense in its current configuration; however, at the high temperature, the exit velocity reduction was significant.




Zhang, Purdue University.

Subject Area

Mechanical engineering|Materials science

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