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Scalable laser powder bed fusion processing of nitinol shape memory alloy

Abstract

The authors report on pulsed laser powder bed fusion fabrication of nitinol (NiTi) shape memory materials. The authors first performed single-track laser parameter sweeps to assess melt pool stability and determine energy parameters and hatch spacing for larger builds. The authors then assessed the melt pool chemistry as a function of laser energy density and build plate composition. Brittle intermetallics were found to form at the part/build plate interface for both N200 and Ti-6-4 substrates. The intermetallic formation was reduced by building on a 50Ni–50Ti substrate, but delamination still occurred due to thermal stresses upon cooling. The authors were able to overcome delamination on all substrates and fabricate macroscopic parts by building a lattice support structure, which is both compliant and controls heat transfer into the build plate. This approach will enable scalable fabrication of complex NiTi parts.

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Acknowledgments

The authors thank Zachary Ulbig for assistance in running the Additive Manufacturing system utilized for this work. This work was supported by the JHU/APL Research and Exploratory Development Independent Research and Development Program.

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Correspondence to Morgana M. Trexler or Steven Storck.

Supplementary material

Supplementary material

The supplementary material for this article can be found at: https://doi.org/10.1557/mrc.2019.134.

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McCue, I., Peitsch, C., Montalbano, T. et al. Scalable laser powder bed fusion processing of nitinol shape memory alloy. MRS Communications 9, 1214–1220 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1557/mrc.2019.134

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