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Adding Silicon Nitride to 316L Stainless Steel Powder Can Improve Metal 3D Printing Quality

wallpapers Industry 2020-07-28

Researchers reported that researchers at the University of Technology Graz (TU Graz) in Austria modified 316L stainless steel powder to achieve better print quality and surface finish when used in additive manufacturing.

It is reported that the pioneering aspect of this research is the addition of silicon nitride to 316L stainless steel to control the reaction of boride, which is used as an activator during the sintering process. Using this method, researchers can minimize the need for support structures and produce parts with better surface and mechanical properties.

3D printing of metals allows the creation of highly complex and lightweight end-use parts that can be used in the aerospace industry or biomedicine. However, despite the need for metal 3D printing, there are still challenges to overcome, such as minimizing support structures and improving the surface quality of finished parts.

The researchers made it using boride, which was mixed with 316L stainless steel powder. Although borides increase the density of the sinter, they do not dissolve well in the iron-based material, and they form a layer around the particles after melting and solidification. To control the bride's behavior to obtain the desired result, silicon nitride is added to the metal powder.

The researchers tested the physical and mechanical properties and porosity of 20 different laboratory-made 316L stainless steel powder mixtures. The conclusion is that the deformation of the sintered product can be reduced by controlling the amount of silicon nitride and boron.

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