Additive Manufacturing Simulation - “Dangling Node” Hex-Meshes.
In many AM simulation applications, the problem of obtaining an accurate solution in a timely manner is essential. When using FE simulation, this can be realized in a variety of ways including mesh refinement and coarsening in areas where a more accurate and less accurate solution is sought, respectively. For example, when performing scanning path simulations it makes sense to use a finer mesh near the heat source at the top surface.
In general, there are several ways of how hex-meshes can be refined and coarsened; one way is to split the elements locally into sub-elements with coinciding nodes. Another way is to use hex-meshes with “dangling nodes”. Dangling nodes refers to the setting where adjacent element nodes are not directly connected with each other but are connected to element edges instead. Generating hex-meshes with dangling nodes is a very convenient way to refine meshes, since one does not have to worry about making element splits while guaranteeing all nodes to remain connected.
AdditiveLab offers several possibilities to create hex-meshes specifically tailored to the needs for scanning path analyses, including a novel approach of utilizing dangling nodes hex-meshes.
In the picture below an example is demonstrated, where temperature simulation results of scanning path analyses are compared; the image to the left and right present results utilizing a conventional and a “dangling nodes” mesh, respectively. The results are almost identical, with some differences in the distal regions with coarser elements.
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