Comparison of LPBF processing of AlSi40 alloy using blended and pre-alloyed powder

Rebecca Garrard, Donal Lynch, Luke N. Carter, Nicholas J.E. Adkins, Rodolfe Gie, Estelle Chouteau, Laurent Pambaguian, Moataz M. Attallah

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Elemental powders or pre-alloyed powders can be blended to form a powder stock with new compositions. In-situ alloying of blended powder mixtures during LPBF processing speeds up the alloy development process as it allows composition adjustment. Pre-alloyed powder is typically used in industrial settings to ensure consistency of the built material, whereas blended powders are used to experiment with new alloy compositions. In this research, we compare a range of binary alloy compositions built from blended elemental powder and pre-alloyed powder to evaluate how the feedstock powder affects the built material. The alloy is a lightweight alloy with a low coefficient of thermal expansion, comprised of Al and Si. The following compositions were formed by mixing pure Al and Si powder: AlSi38, AlSi40 and AlSi42, and pre-alloyed AlSi40 powder was also used.

Parametric studies were performed for both the blended and pre-alloyed powders. It was found that the optimum process parameters for the blended and pre-alloyed powder were different. The line energy for pre-alloyed powder was selected to be 0.150 J/mm (300 W, and 2000 mm/s) which yielded a density of 99.5% of the theoretical density. The optimal density for the blended powders was 99.07-99.16% which was also achieved with 0.150 J/mm (375 W, 2500 mm/s). The alloys are brittle, with Young's modulus 86-99 GPa. Coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) reduced with increasing Si content, material built from pre-alloyed powder had 5% higher CTE than material built from blended powder.
Original languageEnglish
Article number100038
Number of pages8
JournalAdditive Manufacturing Letters
Volume2
Early online date18 Feb 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2022

Keywords

  • In-situ alloying
  • Low CTE alloy
  • Feedstock comparison
  • Hypereutectic AlSi alloy
  • Laser powder bed fusion
  • Additive manufacturing

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