Geometry and Distortion Prediction of Multiple Layers for Wire Arc Additive Manufacturing with Artificial Neural Networks
Wire arc additive manufacturing (WAAM) is a direct energy deposition (DED) process with high deposition rates, but deformation and distortion can occur due to the high energy input and resulting strains. Despite great efforts, the prediction of distortion and resulting geometry in additive manufacturing processes using WAAM remains challenging. In this work, an artificial neural network (ANN) is established to predict welding distortion and geometric accuracy for multilayer WAAM structures. For demonstration purposes, the ANN creation process is presented on a smaller scale for multilayer beads on plate welds on a thin substrate sheet. Multiple concepts for the creation of ANNs and the handling of outliers are developed, implemented, and compared. Good results have been achieved by applying an enhanced ANN using deformation and geometry from the previously deposited layer. With further adaptions to this method, a prediction of additive welded structures, geometries, and shapes in defined segments is conceivable, which would enable a multitude of applications for ANNs in the WAAM-Process, especially for applications closer to industrial use cases. It would be feasible to use them as preparatory measures for multi-segmented structures as well as an application during the welding process to continuously adapt parameters for a higher resulting component quality.