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The Main Preparation Process and Application Fields of Metal 3D Printing Powder

According to relevant data analysis reports, the scale of 3D composite printing materials in the future market will continue to increase, and the application of metal materials will also increase year by year. It is estimated that composite materials are expected to reach US$111 million in 2022, and the market size of 3D printing metal materials will reach US$800 million. , R&D and production of metal materials will have a broader market space.
The current mainstream metal 3D printing technologies include: selective laser melting (SLM), laser near net shaping (LENS), electron beam selective melting (EBSM) technology, direct energy deposition (DED) technology, etc.
SLM is currently the most common technology in metal 3D printing. Its working principle is: the computer converts the three-dimensional data of the object into layered cross-sectional 2D data and transmits it to the printer. During the printing process, the setting is laid on the substrate with a squeegee. Layer-thick metal powder, the focused laser scans under the control of the scanning galvanometer according to the pre-planned path and process parameters. The metal powder melts under the irradiation of the high-energy laser, and solidifies rapidly to form a metallurgical bonding layer. When the printing task of one layer is finished, the substrate is lowered by a height of the slice layer thickness, and the squeegee continues the powder leveling, laser scanning processing, and repeats this process until the entire part is printed.
The advantage of this technology is that it can be widely used in the mass production of metal parts with complex shapes, and most metal powders are suitable for this technology, including titanium alloys, aluminum alloys, high temperature alloys, copper alloys, cobalt-chromium alloys, stainless steel, high-strength Steel, die steel, etc., the obtained parts are nearly 100% dense.

Metal 3D printing powder have a wide range of applications, such as petrochemical engineering applications, aerospace, automobile manufacturing, injection molds, light metal alloy casting, food processing, medical treatment, papermaking, power industry, jewelry, fashion, etc. However, because of the material properties of metal 3D printing materials, they have specific application areas. Therefore, the process of selecting metal 3D printing materials is a process of weighing multiple factors. Moreover, 3D printing metal cannot be weighed solely by the parameters of the metal 3D printer. Each metal material has its own characteristics, including application, function, stability, durability, aesthetics, and economy.
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