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Optimization of Ti-6Al-4V Fused Filament Fabrication With Vacuumless Sintering

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  • schoolOptimization

Metal additive manufacturing has greatly changed the production of custom metal parts and opened the doors to complex structures that are tailored to have mechanical-chemical properties. While directed energy deposition, electron beam melting or selective laser sintering have been well established, produced parts can be plagued with anisotropic properties, and there are safety concerns when working with loose reactive metal powders. Here, we present our work on using metal-fused-filament-fabrication (mFFF) of Ti-6Al-4V using a vacuumless, inert sintering process. We studied how to compensate for part deformation that often comes from plastic binder removal. Through printing parameters, printing orientation, and optimization of solvent debinding, we studied how mFFF parts behaved and characterized these for sintering temperatures ranging from 1150 to 1450 °C. Our samples were characterized through 3D scanning, computerized tomography, scanning electron microscopy, cross-section analysis, x-ray diffraction and tensile testing. Through printer parameter optimization and sintering, we demonstrate densities of 91-92% of theoretical Ti-6Al-4V without post-processing. 

Learning Objectives:

  • Locate key parameters to optimize and increase additively manufactured part quality.
  • Perform metal fused filament fabrication of Ti-6Al-4V sintering with a vacuumless setup.