Sustainable Metal Powder Utilization in Powder Bed Fusion Additive Manufacturing
|Coordinator||Swerea IVF AB - Avdelningen för Tillverkning|
|Funding from Vinnova||SEK 500 000|
|Project duration||November 2017 - June 2018|
|Venture||The strategic innovation programme for Production2030|
Purpose and goal
A device for evaluating the layer propagation properties of powder intended for additive manufacturing (AM) under such authentic conditions as possible has been constructed. With stepper motors, layer propagation speed and lowering of platform can be varied and carefully controlled. A mounted microscope can capture images on specific positions of a powder layer for subsequent image analysis. Once a clear methodology is refined and established, equipment may provide a tool for predicting AM mode and minimizing the risk of poor results and discarding
Expected results and effects
The powder evaluation equipment for layer propagation properties was delivered according to specifications. Function tests were performed with good results and when adequate procedures and test methods have been developed, this is expected to provide the ability to predict function in powderbed based AM. It can also provide the opportunity to optimize process parameters in machine handling based on results in the test equipment and lead to improved material and resource utilization.
Planned approach and implementation
Based on experience at Swerea IVF regarding SLM of metal powder, general powder engineering at Swerea IVF and Höganäs AB, discussions were held about design and construction with the external equipment manufacturer. Some studies on possible solutions for visualization of the layer surface were also carried out as a background. Consideration of the limited project budget led to a solution that prioritized the most important functions (lowering of platform and layer spread rate) but that there would be additional possibilities for future supplementation.