Mechanical metamaterials are man-made materials in which the mechanical properties are mainly defined by their structures instead of the properties of each component. Periodic cellular structures consisting of honeycomb, tetrahedral, 3D Kagome and pyramidal truss arrangement of webs or struts have recently attracted a lot of attention since they have a broad range of applications including structural components, energy absorption, heat exchangers, catalyst support, filters and biomaterials. In addition, lattice structures such as the octahedral are being investigated since they are structurally more efficient than foams of a similar density made from the same material, and the ease with which these structures can now be produced using 3D printing and additive manufacturing.
This research investigates the mechanical behavior and anisotropy in octahedral lattice structures of two different relative densities fabricated out of Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) using Stratasys FDM 360mc and Dimension sst 1200es 3D printers. The machines were used to print octahedral lattice structured parts with struts 1.00 mm in diameter followed by parts with struts 2.6 mm in diameter and tested in compression in three mutually perpendicular directions. The compressive stress-strain behavior of the lattice structures observed is typical of cellular structures which include a region of nominally elastic response, yielding, and plastic strain hardening to a peak in strength, followed by a drop in flow stress. It was found that not only is the stiffness and strength of the as fabricated parts anisotropic but they, in addition to failure, are also a function of the relative density/strut diameter of the structure.