Abstract: Additive manufacturing (AM) has provided new applications for gas atomized aluminum-silicon metal powders. Gas atomization can also provide an avenue to develop specialized aluminum alloy powders for AM. The high cooling rates experienced in the gas atomization process extends the solubility of alloying elements, particularly transition and rare earth elements, and refines the structure of intermetallic phases. Atomization technology has provided compositions of standard aluminum alloys, like A7075; as well as, a series of next generation, high performance aluminum powders, which use evenly dispersed nano-sized crystals and quasicrystals to provide significant improvements in strength and wear properties. The fusion process in AM can be a limitation for some of these alloys. The MELDTM process is a solid-state additive manufacturing process that allows for high-deposition rate AM without melting. This work describes the properties developed in current and next generation aluminum alloys through the MELDTM process.
Authors: Wayne K. Daye, Chase Cox, Nanci Hardwick, and Thomas W. Pelletiers II
Keywords: Additive Manufacturing, High Strength Aluminum, Aluminum Alloy Powders