Sinter structure analysis of titanium structures fabricated via binder jetting additive manufacturing
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To facilitate functional part production in metal binder jetting additive manufacturing, the relationship between materials, process and sintering needs to be understood. This work relates sintering theory with process outcomes. For this, commercially pure titanium was deployed to study the effect of powder size distributions on green and sintered part qualities (bulk density, relative density, particle size, pore size, sinter neck size). The powders were uni- and bi-modal blends of 0–45 μm, 45–106 μm, and 106–150 μm. Computed tomography analysis was used to evaluate non-densifying (1000 °C) and densifying (1400 °C) sintering regimes. For green parts, the relative density and powder size distribution along the build direction followed a periodic fluctuation equivalent to the 150 μm layer thickness. The relative density fluctuation range was higher (±20%) for bi-modal blends with 0–45 μm, compared to all other blends (±8%) due to powder segregation. For non-densifying sintering, parts with 0–45 μm blends displayed both densifying and non-densifying behavior. For densifying sintering, powders containing 0–45 μm blends surpassed the 70% density threshold expected for this sintering regime. Overall, the finer particles improved bulk density of sintered parts, at the expense of higher levels of shrinkage and density anisotropy along the build direction.
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Evan Wheat, Mihaela Vlasea, James Hinebaugh, Craig Metcalfe (2018). Sinter structure analysis of titanium structures fabricated via binder jetting additive manufacturing. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/14097
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