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Researchers from Caltech are exploring novel methods of controlling porosity through additive manufacturing. Their study published in the Journal of Porous Materials focuses primarily on parameter-induced pore size in Laser Beam powder bed fusion (PBF-LB). This technique was already effective for other metal alloys, but had not been explored with copper-based alloys.
In their investigation, they examined the processing and porosity of copper, brass, and bronze samples to understand how PBF-LB parameters affect material properties. They were able to control porosity levels ranging from 23,5% to 47.9% in copper, 0.8% up to 55.3% in bronze, and 8.0% up to 50.2% in brass.
This research is especially important for spacecraft applications, where tunable copper-porous architectures are needed for specific electrical and thermal properties, as well as catalytic properties. The traditional AM techniques are often unable to achieve sub-millimeter porousness, but this research opens up new avenues for creating intricate porous structure.
The findings highlight the importance of parameter selection for AM processes by demonstrating how it directly affects material properties. Further electrical-mechanical characterization has highlighted porosity’s impact on bulk materials behavior.
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Original content by 3dprinting.com: “Exploring sub-millimeter porosity in copper alloys for spacecraft applications”
Read the full article here https://3dprinting.com/news/exploring-sub-millimeter-porosity-in-copper-alloys-for-spacecraft-applications/