John Doyle
Ansys Employee

How many deposition layers is represented by each element? Keep in mind that even with DED method, the AM simulation (via WB-Mechanical or MAPDL) is a lumped layered approach. 

From the Additive Docs: 

"The goal of a DED process simulation is to predict the macro-level, temperature-induced distortions and stresses in parts to prevent build failures, and provide trend data for improving designs for additive manufacturing including part orientation and part build order.

The simulation is not meant to provide detailed thermal or structural results needed for prediction of micro-level process phenomena (that is, microstructure). The simulation will also not provide detailed modeling of the welding melt pool."