Title: Digital design integrity for additive manufacturing: examining reliability issues in the digital preproduction process

Authors: Steven L. Brown; Harry A. Pierson

Addresses: Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Arkansas, 4207 Bell Engineering Center, Fayetteville, AR, 72701, USA ' Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Arkansas, 4207 Bell Engineering Center, Fayetteville, AR, 72701, USA

Abstract: Despite a literature base stretching over three decades, the digital pre-production process for additive manufacturing continues to lack integration and robustness. Current best practice relies on operators to identify potential issues to prevent scrap and rework. While most academic research focuses on systematic tessellation approximation errors, this paper offers a detailed investigation of nonsystematic translation errors and their root causes. All stages of the digital pre-production process (tessellation, slicing, and tool path generation) were found to be equally vulnerable, and no common commercial software tool was found to be superior in its ability to prevent translation errors. Given the improbability of completely eliminating digital translation problems under the current paradigm, this paper proposes an alternative with new feedback loops to ensure digital design integrity.

Keywords: additive manufacturing; 3D printing; additive manufacturing quality; meshing; slicing; toolpath generation; CAD; computer aided design; tessellation; translation verification.

DOI: 10.1504/IJRAPIDM.2018.089728

International Journal of Rapid Manufacturing, 2018 Vol.7 No.1, pp.43 - 58

Available online: 01 Feb 2018

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