Quality parts from quality powders

To ensure the quality of parts produced by additive manufacturing, it is necessary to have quality powders at reception, during storage and in production. Sirris can help you characterise them..

The quality of powders used in laser beam melting is essential to the quality of the printed parts. That's obvious. But how do you characterise these powders and measure the determining properties? Resolving these questions is all the more necessary because fusion bed powders are recycled from one batch to the other on the one hand and on the other hand, they are stored in conditions that are not always optimal.

Quality assurance for powders thus helps reduce the number of defects in parts and increase the robustness of the manufacturing technology, which has a direct impact on the profitability of the process. Now, Sirris, by means of various projects (including a pre-standardisation project supported by the SPF Economy), is endeavouring to offer solutions to companies.

Following an analysis of the sensitivity of different measuring methods, Sirris has acquired new equipment especially from Granutools for the easy detection, in production conditions, of powder variations in terms of particle size, humidity and oxidation.

Also, for laboratory purposes, Sirris is validating protocols for the robust measurement of the humidity content of powders as well as several other physical quantities.

More generally, Sirris has assessed the impact of the additive process on the powder in order to establish rules of best practice related to its handling and to sampling conditions. Sirris then drew up specifications for producing a handling tool for powders so as to limit the risks of variations and contamination due to the process.
Currently, this tool is being manufactured in the Sirris workshops. Its effectiveness will soon be tested, especially with aluminium powders.

Argon glove box for controlling the conditioning of powders for research purposes

Powder handling tools being developed for production conditions

Thanks to its analysis equipment and controlled atmosphere conditioning facilities, Sirris can help you qualify your additive manufacturing powders in terms of setting up a quality assurance system, for finalising a new material or a new manufacture.