Melting powder consolidating

22-May-2019 06:25 by 7 Comments

Melting powder consolidating

Powder metallurgy (PM) is the general term for the consolidation of metal powders into solid components using heat and pressure to fuse the particles together, it is alternatively referred to as press and sinter.There are various technologies that fall under the PM umbrella such as hot isostatic pressing (HIP), metal injection moulding (MIM) and spark plasma sintering (SPS).

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Since the components are built layer by layer, it is possible to design internal features and passages that could not be cast or otherwise machined.

Metal feedstock in wire form is fed into the top of the atomiser, it is then melted using a plasma torch, as the molten metal falls it solidifies creating spherical particles.

Probably the most common method of metal powder production, it uses a molten metal pool which is forced through a nozzle, then broken up with a stream of inert gas such as argon or nitrogen.

This technology is used to manufacture direct parts for a variety of industries including aerospace, dental, medical and other industries that have small to medium size, highly complex parts and the tooling industry to make direct tooling inserts. The technology is used both for rapid prototyping, as it decreases development time for new products, and production manufacturing as a cost saving method to simplify assemblies and complex geometries.) of 250 x 250 x 325 mm, and the ability to ‘grow’ multiple parts at one time, The Northwestern Polytechnical University of China is using a similar system to build structural titanium parts for aircraft.

On September 5, 2013 Elon Musk tweeted an image of Space X's regeneratively-cooled Super Draco rocket engine chamber emerging from an EOS 3D metal printer, noting that it was composed of the Inconel superalloy.

Additionally, DMLS allows for more rigorous testing of prototypes.

Since DMLS can use most alloys, prototypes can now be functional hardware made out of the same material as production components.In a surprise move, Space X announced in May 2014 that the flight-qualified version of the Super Draco engine is fully printed, and is the first fully printed rocket engine.Using Inconel, an alloy of nickel and iron, additively-manufactured by direct metal laser sintering, the engine operates at a chamber pressure of 6,900 kilopascals (1,000 psi) at a very high temperature.Complex geometries and assemblies with multiple components can be simplified to fewer parts with a more cost effective assembly.DMLS does not require special tooling like castings, so it is convenient for short production runs.The technology fuses metal powder into a solid part by melting it locally using the focused laser beam.