An ACO-Based Tool-Path Optimizer for 3-D Printing Applications

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

15 Scopus Citations
View graph of relations

Author(s)

  • Kai-Yin Fok
  • Chi-Tsun Cheng
  • Nuwan Ganganath
  • Herbert Ho-Ching Iu
  • Chi K. Tse

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Article number8590761
Pages (from-to)2277-2287
Journal / PublicationIEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics
Volume15
Issue number4
Online published27 Dec 2018
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019
Externally publishedYes

Abstract

Layered additive manufacturing, also known as three-dimensional (3-D) printing, has revolutionized transitional manufacturing processes. Fabrication of 3-D models with complex structures is now feasible with 3-D printing technologies. By performing careful tool-path optimization, the printing process can be speeded up, while the visual quality of printed objects can be improved simultaneously. The optimization process can be perceived as an undirected rural postman problem (URPP) with multiple constraints. In this paper, a tool-path optimizer is proposed, which further optimizes solutions generated from a slicer software to alleviate visual artifacts in 3-D printing and shortens print time. The proposed optimizer is based on a modified ant colony optimization (ACO), which exploits unique properties in 3-D printing. Experiment results verify that the proposed optimizer can deliver significant improvements in computational time, print time, and visual quality of printed objects over optimizers based on conventional URPP and ACO solvers.

Research Area(s)

  • Ant colony optimization (ACO), arc routing, layered additive manufacturing, rural postman problem, tool-path optimization

Citation Format(s)

An ACO-Based Tool-Path Optimizer for 3-D Printing Applications. / Fok, Kai-Yin; Cheng, Chi-Tsun; Ganganath, Nuwan et al.

In: IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics, Vol. 15, No. 4, 8590761, 04.2019, p. 2277-2287.

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review