3D printing method to improve strength and ductility of stainless steels

Researcher looking into computer

Researchers from the Marine and Offshore programme have developed a new method using Selective Laser Melting (SLM) to print stainless steel 316L and titanium with outstanding mechanical properties.

Led by Associate Professor Tor Shu Beng, the team’s findings were published in top tier journals like  NPG Asia Materials ​and  Materials & Design .

Senior Research Fellow Dr Tan Xipeng, explains that their res​earch on melt pool control and microstructural engineering allows them to selectively melt metal powders and align them into a zig-zag pattern microstructure, which cannot be reproduced by traditional processes. This leads to 40% stronger and 40% more ductile printed parts for different industries spanning from aviation to marine and offshore.

The team looks to develop a new class of alloys, such as high entropy alloys, with higher strength and ductility.