Microstructural Characteristics of Stainless Steel 316L Processed by Selective Laser Melting Technology

  • Ismat AraEmail author
  • X. W. Tangpong
  • Fardad Azarmi
Conference paper
Part of the The Minerals, Metals & Materials Series book series (MMMS)


Among various additive manufacturing methods, selective laser melting (SLM) is a practical method for metal manufacturing due to its ability to make complex geometry and fabricate parts with superior mechanical properties. Utilization of high strength laser in SLM system forms a high temperature gradient which may alter microstructure of 3D printed metals due to rapid cooling during solidification process. The present study focuses on the microstructural evolution of AISI 316L stainless steel manufactured by SLM to better understand its characteristics and features for further improvement of this technology. Optical microscopy (OM), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), and TEM with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX) have been carried out on 3D printed samples. The microstructural observation indicated very low porosity with homogeneous composition throughout the specimen. A layer by layer structure with columnar grains grown in the direction of heat transfer was clearly seen in the microstructure. A dense dislocation network with a single austenite phase crystallographic structure was identified as well from nanoscale observation of the samples.


Additive manufacturing SLM 316L steel Microstructural characterization 


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Copyright information

© The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Mechanical EngineeringNorth Dakota State UniversityFargoUSA

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