Main activities refer to the design and development of mechanical components in different fields of application, such as automotive and automated equipment and machines. Moreover, core activities regard the testing, modelling, and analysis of materials’ behaviour for different applications. The research activities are summarised as follows:

Structural integrity

  • Fatigue and fracture characterization of metal additive manufacturing products.
  • Design and analysis of structural joints, including welding, adhesive bonding, bolting and riveting and hybrid joints.
  • Mechanical characterization of metallic, polymer and composite materials.
  • Failure analysis of mechanical components.

Computer Aided Engineering:

  • Design and topological optimization of mechanical component.
  • Design and topological optimization of mechanical component manufactured with additive manufacturing processes.
  • Interactive design of mechanical systems.
  • Virtual prototyping and simulations of mechanical components under complex working conditions.
  • Virtual prototyping and simulations of injection moulding processes for plastic components.
  • Simulation of residual strength of cracked structures subjected to static and fatigue loads.
  • Development of micromechanical models to simulate the behaviour of materials.

Product development process:

  • Conceptual design and methods for product development in the early design phases.
  • Methods and tools for design automation and concurrent engineering.

Experimental Testing

  • Strain measurement through Strain Gauges;
  • Full field strain measurement for materials and components through the application of the Digital Image Correlation Technique
  • Design and Development of tailored specimens and equipment, for material and components testing



Main activities focus on the target design methodologies for engineering design (DfX) and 3D parametric modelling with a specific focus on mechanical products and components used in aeronautical sector, equipment and machines, and household appliances. The research activities are summarised as follows:

Life cycle engineering

  • Life cycle analysis and characterization of mechanical products and components.
  • Life cycle assessment (LCA) e Life cycle cost assessment (LCCA) + software modelling.
  • Product eco-design di prodotto, including disasssembly analysis, energy efficiency, material selection, etc.

Target design methodologies (DfX)

  • Design for Manufacturing and Assembly (DfMA) both at conceptual and detail design phase.
  • Design for Disassembly and technical analysis of design solutions to reduce disassembly times.
  • Design to cost (DtC) for product/component cost reduction.
  • Customised CAD-based software tool for the mentioned methodologies.



Main activities focus on microstructure analysis and characterization of metallic material for industrial application (i.e., automotive, aerospace, naval, food industry, etc.), developed with innovative (i.e., additive manufacturing) and traditional manufacturing processes. The research activities are summarised as follows:

Additive Manufacturing of metallic materials

  • Microstructure analysis with different techniques (i.e., EBSD, X-ray crystallography)
  • Mechanical properties optimization with innovative thermal treatments for metallic alloys manufactured with SLM
  • Creep behaviour of metallic alloys manufactured with SLM
  • Aging analysis and characterization of mechanical properties at different layers of components manufactured with SLM

Innovative coating deposition methods and repair of mechanical components

  • Microstructure analysis of wear-resisting coating for Nichel superalloys manufactured with HVOF, Laser Cladding, and Cold Spray.
  • Development of repair techniques for aeronautical products via Electro Spark Deposition (ESD).
  • Analysis and characterization of surface properties after Friction Stir Processing (FSP).


ProDiMet group performs the research activities in the following laboratories with dedicated equipment:

  • Assembly/Disassembly laboratory (fully equipped with standard and non-standard tools)
  • Material testing laboratory
    • Servo-hydraulic testing machine MTS 810: load range +/- 250/25kN; extensometer (gauge length 10-50mm); clip-gage +/-3mm; climatic chamber -30°C +80°C
    • Servo-electro-mechanical testing machine Instron: load range +/- 30kN
    • Servo-electro-mechanical testing machine Instron: load range +/- 5/0.5kN
    • Resonance fatigue testing machine: static load range 20kN + dynamic load range +/- 10kN
    • Data Acquisition Conditioner for resistive strain gauges
    • Liquid Penetrant Examination
    • Temperature and moisture controlled conditioning for specimens to be tested
  • Other equipment available at SITEIA.PARMA (Tecnopolo di Parma)
    • Drop Tower for impact test of composites and polymers
  • Digital Image Correlation System for full field strain measurement
  • Metallurgy and Innovative Materials laboratory
    • Sample preparation for microscopy and SEM analysis.
    • Microstructural characterization o metallic materials  
    • Microscopic measures of the metallic grain dimensions, porosity and other features (with LEICA DMi8C)
    • SEM investigation and statistical analysis of metallic grain characteristics
    • Rockwell hardness measures with Rockwell ZWICK 4150BK
    • Vickers micro-hardness measures with Leica VMHT equipment
    • Thermal treatment with Nabertherm equipment (T.max 1100-1200°C)

Selected publications

Collini, L., Pirondi, A. Micromechanical modeling of the effect of stress triaxiality on the strain to failure of ductile cast iron. (2020) Engineering Fracture Mechanics, 238, art. no. 107270. DOI: 10.1016/j.engfracmech.2020.107270

Kumar, A., Collini, L., Daurel, A., Jeng, J.-Y. Design and additive manufacturing of closed cells from supportless lattice structure. (2020) Additive Manufacturing, 33, art. no. 101168, DOI: 10.1016/j.addma.2020.101168

Nicoletto, G., Konečna, R., Frkan, M., Riva, E. Influence of layer-wise fabrication and surface orientation on the notch fatigue behavior of as-built additively manufactured Ti6Al4V. (2020) International Journal of Fatigue, 134, art. no. 105483. DOI: 10.1016/j.ijfatigue.2020.105483

Nicoletto, G. Influence of rough as-built surfaces on smooth and notched fatigue behavior of L-PBF AlSi10Mg (2020) Additive Manufacturing, 34, art. no. 101251. DOI: 10.1016/j.addma.2020.101251

Pirondi, A., Dazzi, F., Zomparelli, L. Adhesive joint use and aging in food machinery: A case-study on beverage filling systems (2021) International Journal of Adhesion and Adhesives, 107, Article number 102852

Giuliese, G., Palazzetti, R., Moroni, F., Zucchelli, A., Pirondi, A. Cohesive zone modelling of delamination response of a composite laminate with interleaved nylon 6,6 nanofibres (2015) Composites Part B: Engineering, 78, 384 - 392

Bonora, N., Gentile, D., Pirondi A., Newaz, G. Ductile damage evolution under triaxial state of stress: Theory and experiments (2005) International Journal of Plasticity, 21(5), 981 – 1007

Lutey, A.H.A., Moroni, F., Pulsed laser texturing for improved adhesive-bonded polyethylene (PE) joints. (2020) International Journal of Adhesion and Adhesives. Vol. 102, Article number 102676. DOI: 10.1016/j.ijadhadh.2020.102676.

Pirondi, A., Moroni, F., Amborsini. D., Effect of infill ratio on fracture toughness of Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) polymeric adhesive joints. Journal of Adhesion. Volume 98, Issue 6, Pages 606 – 6362022. DOI: 10.1080/00218464.2021.1986019.

Formentini, G., Bouissiere, F., Cuiller, C., Dereux, P-E., Favi, C. Conceptual Design for Assembly methodology formalization: systems installation analysis and manufacturing information integration in the design and development of aircraft architectures. (2022) Journal of Industrial Information Integration, Vol. 26, 100327. DOI: 10.1016/j.jii.2022.100327

Favi, C., Campi, F., Germani, M., Mandolini, M., Engineering knowledge formalization and proposition for informatics development towards a CAD-integrated DfX system for product design (2022). Advanced engineering informatics, Vol. 51, 101537. DOI: 10.1016/j.aei.2022.101537

Favi, C., Campi, F., Germani, M., Comparative life cycle assessment of metal arc welding technologies by using engineering design documentation. (2019) International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment. Vol. 24, pp. 2140-2172. DOI: 10.1007/s11367-019-01621-x

Favi, C., Marconi, M., Germani, M., Mandolini, M., A design for disassembly tool oriented to mechatronic product de-manufacturing and recycling. (2019) Advanced Engineering Informatics, Vol. 39, pp. 62-79. DOI: 10.1016/j.aei.2018.11.008

Di Giovanni, M. T., Bolelli, G., Cerri, E., Castrodeza, E.M., Fatigue crack growth behavior of a selective laser melted AlSi10Mg (2019). Engineering Fracture Mechanics, Vol. 217, 106564. DOI:10.1016/j.engfracmech.2019.106564.

Di Giovanni, M.T., Teixeira Oliveira de Menezes, J., Cerri, E. Castrodeza, E. M., Influence of microstructure and porosity on the fracture toughness of Al-Si-Mg alloy (2020). J. Mater. Res. Technol., Vol. 9(2), pp. 1286-1295. DOI: 10.1016/j.jmrt.2019.11.055.

Paoletti, C., Cerri, E., Ghio, E., Santecchia, E., Cabibbo, M., Spigarelli, S., Effect of low-temperature annealing on creep properties of an AlSi10Mg alloy produced by additive manufacturing: experiments and modelling (2021). Metals, Vol. 11, 179. DOI:10.3390/met11020179.

Cerri, E., Ghio, E., Bolelli, G., Effect of the Distance from Build Platform and Post-Heat Treatment of AlSi10Mg Alloy Manufactured by Single and Multi-Laser Selective Laser Melting (2021) J. of Materi Eng and Perform Vol. 30(7), pp. 4981-4992. DOI:10.1007/s11665-021-05577-8.

Spigarelli, S., Paoletti, C., Cabibbo, M., Cerri, E., Santecchia, E., On the creep performance of the Ti‐6Al‐4V alloy processed by additive manufacturing (2022). Additive Manufacturing, Vol. 49, 102520. DOI:10.1016/j.addma.2021.102520.

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