Regardless of the materials used, additive manufacturing (AM) is one of the most popular emerging fabrication processes used for creating complex and intricate structural components. This study aims to investigate the effects of process parameters – namely, nozzle diameter, layer thickness and infill density on microstructure as well as the mechanical properties of 17–4 PH stainless steel specimens fabricated via material extrusion AM.
The experimental approach investigates the effects of printing parameters, including nozzle diameter, layer thickness and infill density, on surface roughness, physical and mechanical properties of the printed specimens. The tests were triplicated to ensure reproducibility of the experimental results.
The highest ultimate tensile strength, 795.26 MPa, was obtained on specimen that was fabricated with a 0.4 mm nozzle diameter, 0.14 mm layer thickness and 30% infill density. Furthermore, a 0.4 mm nozzle diameter also provided slightly better ductility. This came at the expense of surface finishing, as a 0.25 mm nozzle diameter exhibited better surface finishing over a 0.4 mm nozzle diameter. Infill density was shown to slightly influence the tensile properties, whereas layer thickness showed a significant effect on surface roughness. By contrast, hardness and ductility were independent of nozzle diameter, layer thickness and infill density.
This paper presents a comprehensive analysis relating to various input printing parameters on microstructural, physical and mechanical properties of additively manufactured 17–4 PH stainless steel to improve the printability and processability via AM.
Basak, A., Lee, A., Pramanik, A., Neubauer, K., Prakash, C. and Shankar, S. (2023), "Material extrusion additive manufacturing of 17–4 PH stainless steel: effect of process parameters on mechanical properties", Rapid Prototyping Journal, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/RPJ-05-2022-0169
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