InImpact: The Journal of Innovation Impact

Publisher Future Technology Press
Vol. 8 No. 2 KES Transactions on SDM II - Sustainable Design and Manufacturing 2015
Volume Editors KES International
Journal ISSN 2051-6002
Article TitleEnergy Absorbing Characteristics of Additively Manufactured TPE Cellular Structures
Primary AuthorShwe Soe, Cardiff University
Other Author(s) Michael Ryan; Graham McShane; Peter Theobald
Pages 145 - 158
Article ID sdm15-052
Publication Date 02-May-16

Cellular materials (e.g. honeycombs) manufactured using traditional techniques are commonly used in a range of impact energy absorbing scenarios (packaging, crash protection, etc.). Additive Manufacturing (AM) processes have the capability to generate novel material-geometry combinations, creating new opportunities to produce bespoke and high performance cellular solutions for these applications. Recent developments in AM processing of elastomers are of particular interest for low impact energy scenarios (such as personal protective equipment). However, before wide-spread use, a requirement exists to understand the properties of AM elastomeric materials and the cellular structures manufactured via this route. Previous work has focussed on the mechanical characterisation of laser sintered Thermoplastic Elastomer (TPE), with numerical investigations demonstrating that cellular structures manufactured with this material show potential for improving impact attenuation [1], [2]. This paper represents an extension to this concept, investigating the properties of five contrasting cellular structures fabricated using one of the newly developed TPE materials (NinjaFlex), via the Fused Deposition Modelling process. We report the results of material characterisation experiments in both tension and compression, before proceeding to describe and analyse the impact energy absorption characteristics of each cellular structure.

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Remarks Paper presented at KES International Conference on Sustainable Design and Manufacturing, 12-14 April 2015
First date of publication in InImpact: 1 December 2015