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Enabling MULTI-FUNctional performance through multi-material additive manufacturing

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - MULTI-FUN (Enabling MULTI-FUNctional performance through multi-material additive manufacturing)

Reporting period: 2021-09-01 to 2022-08-31

The project focus on developing advanced materials and equipment for AM of multi-material parts
New material combinations will give a significant performance and efficiency boost to MAM products through fully integrated multi-functionalities based on novel active materials, enabling multi-material design without size limitations
New functionalities include embedded electrical conductivity, fibre-optic sensing features & innovative heat management concepts (inc. app. of nanotechnologies)

Use of nano-tech. to maximize thermal conductivity, minimize electrical conductivity &/or improve wear resistance of metals – always optimizing its compatibility to the metal bulk
Recent developments of Al alloys and low alloyed steel grades will be further developed for WAAM
Coating of optical fibres (OF) will be developed to maintain sensing capabilities
In-situ alloying will provide further advanced materials solutions with high flexibility in compositions and adjusted material properties
Developments on AM hardware are driven by the need to combine different materials in distinguishable manner within a structure
It will produce requested material compositions during the layer build up: in-situ alloying applies wire+wire or wire+powder feedstock by WAAM and APPD
Wire+OF to allow sensing capabilities: APPD will generate electrical conductive layers in between insulating layers in metal bodies & OF and Cu lines to transfer data
New materials and technologies will be applied in 10 different combinations in 7 demonstrators, belonging to 3 use cases (structural parts, moulds, test equipment)
Address of 4 different markets (automotive, aviation, space and production industry) taking advantage of the high built-up rate of WAAM and specialized AM processes for the integration of active materials
AM materials, hardware, process strategy and demonstrator design and manufacturing will be continuously supervised through feedback loops improved
LCA, LCC, safety and Eco-efficiency will ensure increase in efficiency, quality and reliability as well as the reduction of resources and cost
WP1 Safety & environment analysis on the requirements for the design of materials, processes and demos; Workshop on LCA methodology and LCI, and interaction with partners to support data collection; Establishment of methods to estimate H&E risk of production by-products and pilot experiments on cytotoxicity and antimicrobial activity, using a number of nanoparticles and nanowires
WP2 Development of: Technical specifications of requirements for multi-materials & -functionalities; Cu coating of Mo and DiaCool particles with homogeneous 100 and 300nm thickness via PVD and Al-TiC nanocomposites by mixing micron Al particles with 50nm TiC nanoparticles for wire extrusion; New high strength aluminium wire (Al-Zn-Mg-Cu) with impressive mechanical properties (Rp0.2 > 390 MPa, Rm > 470, MPa, A> 5%); in-situ compositions of Invar 36, Al-Cu and Al-Mg wires and Cu MMCs. Production of OF with Cu, Au & Ni metallic coatings and successfully embedment by WAAM in Al-based components
WP3 Development of 10 different systems using laser & arc deposition; and their respective deposit of several different metals, from Invar to stainless steel, several Al alloys, Cu conductive tracks etc
Embedding of OF into Al WAAM parts was successfully demonstrated and the software developed has been expanded and tested by 2 partners and can drive multi-process systems
WP4 Performed a comprehensive characterisation of nano-treated wires for demo 2; Design of cooling channels and multi-material die inserts for demo 5; WAAM walls manufactured for mechanical characterization and non-destructive testing & Identification of the particular demonstrator-oriented testing routines.
WP5 Development of: time plan regarding technology and staff availability for several demos; Strong interrelation with manufacturing partners and developed technology established; and Initial design with emphasis on functional integration for the majority of demonstrators in discussion
WP6 Set-up of the DEC strategy and plan and its implementation in what concerns building community & networking activities and development of: communication tools & measures and standard press material; plan for knowledge transfer activities; draft plan for SpeedTech forums and MULTI-FUN talks and plan and implementation of standardisation activities
MULTI-FUN will overcome PBF-LB process restrictions by:
Provide a significant performance & efficiency gain in MAM products by fully integrated multi-functionalities based on novel active materials
Enable multi-material design in geometrically complex 3D metal parts without size limitation by innovative, cost-effective AM technologies


Improvement of the efficiency, quality and reliability of the product exploiting nanotechnology for optimising material parameters, to result in:
- Heat sink material with highest conductivity
- Enhanced local heat transfer efficiency
- Improvement of thermal regulation dynamics, production rates & properties of parts produced
- Increased mould lifetime
- Multi-sectorial approach with high level of transferability to other markets
- Enabling radical new design in load carrying vehicle structures, generating frontrunner position due to gains in safety, reliability and comfort
- Digital integration of multi-functional “wired” parts into condition-based monitoring and digital twin process control leading to reduced downtimes, less scrap & lower energy consumption
- Paving the way for SHM for metal parts into aviation industry
Better use of raw materials and resources with reduced environmental impact and lower cost enabling multi-material parts by exploiting WAAM in cooperation with other cost-effective processes to realize multi-functionalities by added active materials resulting in:
- Significantly reducing production waste
- Integrated functionalities leading to enhanced lifetime
- Highly integrative design leading to reductions in no. of single parts, leading to the reduction in causes of failures and maintenance needs
- Environmental impact supervised by LCA concerning cradle-to-grave energy and raw material consumption
- Reduction of production waste
- Implementation of multi-material forming tools in conventional forming processes for energy reduction & enhanced productivity
- Transfer of multi-material opportunities to other forming processes (hot stamping, composite curing, sintering)
- Opening up radical design concepts for moulds and parts in context of predictive maintenance
- Further improvement in durability and lifespan of machinery by integrated condition sensors
New opportunities & business for SMEs across EU
- Offers along the entire value chain will be developed and distributed by beneficiaries
- Inclusion of insights into curricula of 5 EU Unis
- Set up and delivery of training for SMEs on AM
- Positioning of SMEs as frontrunner for AM-materials, equipment, quality, as international quality leader
- Setting up training activities for SMEs to build and enhance AM capacities throughout EU on the long term