MTE6886 - Additive manufacturing of metallic materials - 2018

0 points, SCA Band 2, 0.000 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Chief examiner(s)

Professor Nick Birbilis


Prof Jian-Feng Nie

Unit guides



  • Second semester 2018 (On-campus)




Additive Manufacturing (AM) of metallic materials is an integral part of modern manufacturing. AM allows to produce complex engineering products from a powder stock using a layer by layer deposition. This unit will provide an overview of existing additive manufacturing processes such as 'selective laser melting', 'electron beam melting' and 'direct energy deposition'.

The first part of the unit will focus on powder metallurgy covering aspects of powder production, blending and characterisation. The second part of the unit will investigate different additive manufacturing processes and establish a relationship between processing parameters, resulting microstructure and mechanical properties of 3D printed materials. Furthermore, various post-processing techniques for additive manufactured products will be reviewed.

Examples of the use of these technologies for the design and fabrication of production parts for aerospace and biomedical application will be critically assessed. The students will undertake a 3D printing project and obtain practical skills in computer-aided design and 3D printing of metals.


On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. Describe powder feedstock in terms of its particle shape, size, and distribution and assess its effect on the accuracy and surface finish for different Additive Manufacturing processes.
  2. Recognise the benefits and drawbacks of different metal additive manufacturing technologies.
  3. Demonstrate in-depth understanding of processing parameters such as laser-related parameters or scan-related parameters governing different Additive Manufacturing processes and their relationship to mechanical properties of 3D printed materials.
  4. Discuss in detail the factors that affect the density, surface finish and detail resolution of parts produced by AM processes.
  5. Choose appropriate strategy for the orientation of a 3D printed part on the build platform and the generation of the support structure in order to minimise post-processing activities.
  6. Demonstrate practical skills in computer-aided design and 3D printing of metals.


Continuous assessment: 50%

Examination (2 hours): 50%

Students are required to achieve at least 45% in the total continuous assessment component and at least 45% in the final examination component and an overall mark of 50% to achieve a pass grade in the unit.

Workload requirements

2 hours lectures, 1 hour of tutorial and 9 hours of private study per week.

See also Unit timetable information

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study

Materials science