Scientists of TSU Improved the Quality Control of 3D Printed Composite Products

Scientists of the RadioPhysics Department of Tomsk State University (TSU) have developed software for the spectrometer, which allows it to detect defects and heterogeneities in the entire volume of composite 3D printed parts.

Parts from composite materials can be 2 times stronger and 2 times lighter than steel. Anisoprint Composer A4 is one example of a 3D printer capable of producing such parts.

The development of the improved technique of contactless defectoscopy of materials with the help of terahertz radiation is being developed by Alexander Berdyugin, a graduate student of the Radiophysical Faculty under the guidance of Alexander Badin, a senior researcher of the laboratory of terahertz research at TSU, reports the press service of the university. The technology makes it possible to determine the location of various inhomogeneities in the volume of composite samples.

“Such defectoscopy systems make it possible to visualize the internal structure of objects in a nondestructive way, with the help of terahertz radiation. The main disadvantage of the existing defectoscopy systems is the possibility of obtaining only flat images of the object, similar to a photograph in the optical range. In this case, if the defect or heterogeneity in the material is distributed not only in one plane, but in the entire volume of the object, we will not be able to distinguish them. With the help of new software and modernization of the current system, we can get much more information,” says Alexander Berdyugin.

The main sphere of application of the development is the quality control of the production of composite materials where the issue of uniform distribution of the components in the volume becomes fundamental. In case of optically opaque material, when defects cannot be seen, the development will play an important role in detection of inhomogeneities of composites.

“We are trying to focus on 3D printed composites, whose complex structure can be disrupted by, for example, an incorrect composition or temperature disruption. 3D printing itself takes a long time, and the sooner the defect is identified, the better. After upgrading the spectrometer, we will be able to detect defects in the volume of material in more detail, and thus quickly sift out defects, instead of waiting until the part is ready,” explains Alexander Berdyugin.

Now the laboratory is working on upgrading the defectoscopy system to meet the objectives of new software. The main components of the system have already been assembled, preparations for testing on composite materials with different structures are in progress. The new software product is registered in Rospatent.

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