Incremental sheet forming (ISF) is a highly versatile and flexible process for rapid manufacturing of complex sheet metal parts. The characteristic of localized deformation is significantly different from conventional sheet metal forming process. To understand the fundamental material deformation mechanism during the ISF process is of great importance for ISF process design and optimization in achieving improved material formability, accuracy and more uniform thickness distribution.
In the article published by the Journal of Materials Processing Technology, an analytical model for single point incremental forming (SPIF) process has been developed to describe the localized deformation mechanism. With the consideration of both bending effect and strain hardening, the stress and strain states in the deformation zone are described. Analytical evaluation reveals that the deformation occurs not only in the contact zone, but also in the neighboring wall which has been already formed in the vicinity of the contact zone. In addition, the results also suggest that the fracture tends to appear at the transitional zone between the contact area and the formed wall. In order to validate the analytical results, SPIF simulation and experiments both have been conducted with good agreement obtained.