Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering


Brent Stucker


This research explores the use of two additive manufacturing processes for the fabrication of multi-material structures. Ultrasonic consolidation (UC) and laser- engineered net shaping (LENS) processes were used for parallel systematic investigations of the process parameters and methodologies for the development of multi-material structures.

The UC process uses ultrasonic energy at low temperature to bond metallic foils. A wide range of metallic materials including nickel; titanium; copper; molybdenum; tantalum; MetPreg®; silver; stainless steel; and aluminum alloys 1100, 3003, and 6061 were bonded in different combinations. Material domains are inherently discrete in ultrasonically consolidated structures. The mechanical properties of some of the bonded structures were characterized to lay the groundwork for their real-life applications.

LENS uses a laser beam to deposit metallic powder materials for the fabrication of fully dense structures. Mechanical testing was used to characterize the flexural and tensile properties of dual-material structures made of Ti6Al4V/10wt%TiC composite and Ti6Al4V materials. Experimental results show that the strength of transition joints in multi-material structures significantly depends on the joint design.

Dual-material minimum weight structures, representing geometrically and materially complex structures, were fabricated using the results of the process parameters and fabrication methodologies developed in this work. The structures performed well under loading test conditions. It shows that function-specific multi-material structures ultrasonically consolidated and LENS fabricated can perform well in real-life applications.




This work made publicly available electronically on November 1, 2010.