Rosswag Engineering, a supplier for metal powders, components and qualification services in the metal Additive Manufacturing industry, has successfully qualified an AC1000 air classifier from Blue Power Casting Systems GmbH for use in its metal powder preparation.
With the aid of air classifying, it is reportedly possible to classify even the finest metal powder particles efficiently and reliably. This is particularly relevant regarding the requirements for homogeneous layer coating when used in Laser Beam Powder Bed Fusion (PBF-LB) processes. In addition, the system operates under an argon atmosphere to ensure the quality of the metal powder and occupational safety during preparation.
In metal AM, the requirement-specific preparation and associated reduction of the fine fraction after powder production is of particular importance, states Rosswag. Particles in the range smaller than 15 µm often inhibit the flowability, so that they cannot be reliably applied in the PBF-LB process. In the case of metal powders made from special alloys, the range of usable powder can be increased by separating the fine powder particles in a process-safe manner.
“The sophisticated and modular system design minimises the risk of cross-contamination, so that a wide range of alloys can be processed in a short time,” stated Daniel Beckers, head of metal powder production at Rosswag Engineering. “In addition to the processability of the metal powders, the separation of the finest particle fraction is also relevant for handling and occupational safety. Dust and aerosol formation often occur here, which leads to additional costs when handling the metal powders.”
At Rosswag Engineering, many challenges in the individual preparation of metal powders can be overcome by the new air classifier. This helps ensure that new materials can be atomised into metal powders and qualified in PBF-LB processes at Rosswag, with maximum efficiency, in just a few weeks.