Experimental assessment of thermal gradients and layout effects on the mechanical performance of components manufactured by fused deposition modeling Articles uri icon

publication date

  • April 2022

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1355-2546


  • urpose
    Fused deposition modeling (FDM) is booming as a manufacturing technique in several industrial fields because of its ease of use, the simple-to-meet requirements for its machinery and the possibility to manufacture individual specimens cost-effectively. However, there are still large variations in the mechanical properties of the prints dependent on the process parameters, and there are many discrepancies in the literature as to which are the optimal parameters.

    In this paper, thermal evolution of the printed specimens is set as the main focus and some phenomena that affect this evolution are explored to differentiate their effects on the mechanical properties in FDM. Interlayer waiting times, the thermal effects of the position of the extruder relative to the specimens and the printing layout are assessed. Thermal measurements are acquired during deposition and tensile tests are performed on the specimens, correlating the mechanical behavior with the thermal evolution during printing.

    Additional waiting times do not present significant differences in the prints. Thermal stabilization of the material is observed to be faster than whole layer deposition. The layout is seen to affect the thermal gradients in the printed specimens and increase the fragility. Strain at breakage variations up to 64% are found depending on the layout.

    This study opens new research and technological discussions on the optimal settings for the manufacturing of high-performance mechanical components with FDM through the study of the thermal gradients generated in the printed specimens


  • additive manufacturing; infrared thermography; inter-layer cooling; poly(lactic acid)(pla)