The overall aim of the STEEP Initial Training Network is to establish a transnational research and training platform for the formation and career development of young researchers on energy beam (EB) processing methods - laser, abrasive waterjet machining and focused ion beam machining - which together represent a scientific field of critical importance for further advancement of European of high value-added manufacturing industry.
Whilst these processes differ in nature, a set of key commonalities can be identified among them when considered as dwell-time dependent processes; this allows the approach of EB processes under a unitary technology umbrella. The key element that brings all the EB processing methods together under the STEEP umbrella is a unifying modelling platform of the footprints, as a result of energy beam - workpiece interactions, followed by the development of an original beam path simulator.
Stage 1: Develop a generic modelling platform to predict the full 3D profile of footprints obtained as a result of the interaction between any energy beam and geometrically complex target surfaces.
Stage 2: Develop methods to calibrate the generic footprint models for various EB processing methods; validate the modelling approach on different EB processes.
Stage 3: Develop a beam path simulator that uses the modelled footprints to convolute full 3D surfaces; testing of the beam simulator will enable corrective actions to the EB parameters for error minimisation.
Stage 4: Implement the beam path simulator on real workstations to generate micro/meso/macro freeforms using three complementary energy beam processes (waterjet, laser, ion beam).
Science and Technology under STEEP umbrella
STEEP will deliver research projects in 4 main work packages. The research work in STEEP is subdivided in 17 individual research projects.