3D Microstructural Architectures for Metal and Alloy Components Fabricated by 3D Printing/Additive Manufacturing Technologies
The layer-by-layer building of monolithic, 3D metal components from selectively melted powder layers using laser or electron beams is a novel form of 3D printing or additive manufacturing. Microstructures created in these 3D products can involve novel, directional solidification structures which can include crystallographically oriented grains containing columnar arrays of precipitates characteristic of a microstructural architecture. These microstructural architectures are advantageously rendered in 3D image constructions involving light optical microscopy and scanning and transmission electron microscopy observations. Microstructural evolution can also be effectively examined through 3D image sequences which, along with x-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis in the x-y and x-z planes, can effectively characterize related crystallographic/texture variances. This paper compares 3D microstructural architectures in Co-base and Ni-base superalloys, columnar martensitic grain structures in 17–4 PH alloy, and columnar copper oxides and dislocation arrays in copper.
KeywordsElectron and Laser Beam Melting 3D Microstructures Metals and Alloys
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