Publications / SAND Report

Enabling Particulate Materials Processing Science for High-Consequence, Small-Lot Precision Manufacturing

Bolintineanu, Dan S.; Lechman, Jeremy B.; Bufford, Daniel C.; Clemmer, Joel T.; Cooper, Marcia A.; Erikson, William W.; Silling, Stewart A.; Oliver, Michael S.; Chavez, Andres A.; Schmalbach, Kevin M.; Mara, Nathan A.

This Laboratory Directed Research and Development project developed and applied closely coupled experimental and computational tools to investigate powder compaction across multiple length scales. The primary motivation for this work is to provide connections between powder feedstock characteristics, processing conditions, and powder pellet properties in the context of powder-based energetic components manufacturing. We have focused our efforts on multicrystalline cellulose, a molecular crystalline surrogate material that is mechanically similar to several energetic materials of interest, but provides several advantages for fundamental investigations. We report extensive experimental characterization ranging in length scale from nanometers to macroscopic, bulk behavior. Experiments included nanoindentation of well-controlled, micron-scale pillar geometries milled into the surface of individual particles, single-particle crushing experiments, in-situ optical and computed tomography imaging of the compaction of multiple particles in different geometries, and bulk powder compaction. In order to capture the large plastic deformation and fracture of particles in computational models, we have advanced two distinct meshfree Lagrangian simulation techniques: 1.) bonded particle methods, which extend existing discrete element method capabilities in the Sandia-developed , open-source LAMMPS code to capture particle deformation and fracture and 2.) extensions of peridynamics for application to mesoscale powder compaction, including a novel material model that includes plasticity and creep. We have demonstrated both methods for simulations of single-particle crushing as well as mesoscale multi-particle compaction, with favorable comparisons to experimental data. We have used small-scale, mechanical characterization data to inform material models, and in-situ imaging of mesoscale particle structures to provide initial conditions for simulations. Both mesostructure porosity characteristics and overall stress-strain behavior were found to be in good agreement between simulations and experiments. We have thus demonstrated a novel multi-scale, closely coupled experimental and computational approach to the study of powder compaction. This enables a wide range of possible investigations into feedstock-process-structure relationships in powder-based materials, with immediate applications in energetic component manufacturing, as well as other particle-based components and processes.