Kashapov Ramil' Nailevich, Candidate of engineering sciences, associate professor, sub-department of biomedical engineering and innovation management, Engineering Institute, Kazan (Volga region) Federal University (18 Kremlyovskaya street, Kazan, Russia), firstname.lastname@example.org
Kashapov Nail' Faikovich, Doctor of engineering sciences, professor, director of the Engineering Institute, Kazan (Volga region) Federal University (18 Kremlyovskaya street, Kazan, Russia), email@example.com
Kashapov Lenar Nailevich, Design engineer, sub-department of engineering physics and power engineering, Engineering Institute, Kazan (Volga region) Federal University (18 Kremlyovskaya street, Kazan, Russia), firstname.lastname@example.org
Background. Every year the technologies of additive construction of metal products increase their presence in the field of mechanical engineering. Large production companies, such as DMG MORI, Matsuura Machinery and others, which produce processing hubs (CNC machines), develop and introduce new metal additive manufacturing machines to the market. In these installations, one of the construction materials is metal powder. It has special requirements: particle sphericity, absence of pores, good fluidity and high bulk density. The existing methods for obtaining powders use expensive equipment. Besides they are incapable of producing in smallvolumes. This impedes the development of additive technologies, since according to the prevailing concept the consumer should be able to quickly produce a desired product from a required material. All this indicates the problem of the need to develop new, simple and cheap methods for obtaining metallic powders intended for additive production. The aim of the work is to determine the possibility of using the plasma electrolyte process to produce metal powders suitable for additive production.
Materials and methods. Investigations of the formation of metal powders in the gas discharge plasma with liquid electrodes were carried out in the experimental setup that allows recording volatege magnitude, current strength, and obtaining oscillograms of voltage and current. The morphology of the powder was studied using a scanning electron microscope Carl Zeiss EVO 50. The dispersion composition was determined by the method of screen sieving with a set of sieves from 10 to 300 μm. The microhardness was measured with a PMT-3M device, using the Vickers method.
Results. Experimental samples of the metal powder from steel 07Х16Н4Д4Б-Ш have been obtained. The surface morphology and geometry were studied, the chemical composition of the metal powder was analyzed, and a histogram of its particle size distribution was constructed. The size of the most particles obtained is less than 40 μm. The authors have determined the burning conditions of the discharge at which the powder particles are formed.
Conclusions. The resulting powder is suitable for application at selective laser melting plants. However, further research is needed to increase the productivity of the process by increasing the anode area and determining the dynamic characteristics of the powder.
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