Neutron interferometry detection of early crack formation caused by bending fatigue in additively manufactured SS316 dogbones

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© 2017 Elsevier Ltd. Fatigue in selective laser melted (SLM) and conventionally manufactured stainless steel (SS) 316 dogbones was studied with neutron imaging methods for attenuation, diffraction, and scattering. Neutron attenuation tomography and Bragg edge imaging did not reveal crack formation. Conversely, to efficiently detect the microcrack evolution, two methods of grating-based neutron interferometry, Talbot-Lau and far-field, were employed. Both interferometry methods detect early crack formation via the dark-field (scattering) images, especially for porous microstructures in the range of 0.6 μm to 2 μm. The dark-field image combines sensitivity to micrometer-sized scattering centers at crack formation with sub-millimeter imaging resolution. The crack formation observed with neutron interferometry dark-field was validated post-imaging with additional fatigue cycles to fracture. Further inspection was performed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and optical photography. In the two fatigued dogbones, SLM and conventional crack formation was identified to within 1 mm.

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Materials and Design

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