TitleEffects of Powder Attributes and Laser Powder Bed Fusion (L-PBF) Process Conditions on the Densification and Mechanical Properties of 17-4 PH Stainless Steel
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsIrrinki, H, Dexter, M, Barmore, B, Enneti, R, Pasebani, S, Badwe, S, Stitzel, J, Malhotra, iv, R, Atre, S
KeywordsCasting (Metal) – Innovations, Particulate Matter – Usage, Stainless Steel – Mechanical Properties

The effects of powders attributes (shape and size distribution) and critical processing conditions (energy density) on the densification and mechanical properties of laser powder bed fusion (L-PBF) 17-4 PH stainless steel were studied using four types of powders. The % theoretical density, ultimate tensile strength and hardness of both water- and gas-atomized powders increased with increased energy density. Gas-atomized powders showed superior densification and mechanical properties when processed at low energy densities. However, the % theoretical density and mechanical properties of water-atomized powders were comparable to gas-atomized powders when sintered at a high energy density of 104 J/mm 3 . An important result of this study was that, even at high % theoretical density (97% ± 1%), the properties of as-printed parts could vary over a relatively large range (UTS: 500–1100 MPa; hardness: 25–39 HRC; elongation: 10–25%) depending on powder characteristics and process conditions. The results also demonstrate the feasibility of using relatively inexpensive water-atomized powders as starting raw material instead of the typically used gas-atomized powders to fabricate parts using L-PBF techniques by sintering at high energy densities.