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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/S000453/1
Title: Measurement and characterisation of additively manufactured surface texture
Principal Investigator: Lou, Dr S
Other Investigators:
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Department: Sch of Computing and Engineering
Organisation: University of Huddersfield
Scheme: New Investigator Award
Starts: 01 October 2018 Ends: 30 September 2021 Value (£): 252,962
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Manufacturing Machine & Plant
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Manufacturing
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
07 Aug 2018 Engineering Prioritisation Panel Meeting 7 and 8 August 2018 Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
Having a number of advantages over conventional (subtractive) manufacturing techniques, AM technologies possess the potential to change the paradigm for manufacturing. To facilitate the successful uptake of AM technologies into a wider range of applications, AM needs metrological methods to measure, evaluate and validate both AM processes and AM parts, in order to improve the accuracy and reliability of AM products.

The compound complexities of surface geometry and surface topography of AM parts have caused many problems for existing surface measurement techniques, including tactile, optical and XCT methods. Furthermore, due to the nature of AM processes, the AM-produced surface topography differs from conventionally machined surfaces. Following conventional surface characterisation methods, without considering the unique characteristics of AM surface topography, cannot lead to reliable and meaningful results. This dilemma is further aggravated by the complex surface geometry of the functional AM components, which result in serious distortions to surface characterisation techniques.

Facing these challenges, this research programme will investigate the applicability of various methods for the measurement of AM surface texture, including tactile, optical and XCT techniques. It will also develop bespoke surface characterisation methods for AM layer surfaces, aiming to reflect the characteristics of AM processes, and advanced surface characterisation methods needed for complex AM surfaces, with the aim of predicting the functionality of AM products.

The project aligns with the EPSRC's 'Manufacturing Technologies' topic within 'Manufacturing the Future' theme, and meets the UK's national strategy on AM technology. The outcome of this project will contribute to the control of AM process, and verification of AM product quality. It has great potential to positively impact on the UK's economy through the exploitation of AM technology in the key sectors concerned with high value manufacturing, including the aerospace, healthcare, high-end automotive and creative industries.

Key Findings
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Potential use in non-academic contexts
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Impacts
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Summary
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Organisation Website: http://www.hud.ac.uk