Powder-Free Reactive Printing of Metal Structure

  • New additive manufacturing method to produce 3D metal parts
  • Compacting two active metallic foils

Abstract

Overview Costs related to metal additive manufacturing (AM) remains high. Current AM technologies are associated with costly power equipment and high energy consumption which scales with feedstock and part size. The need for high fabrication throughput and the ability to perform on-demand, on-site manufacturing and repairing are unmet for typical powder-based technology. Technology This invention is about a new additive manufacturing method to produce metal parts in 3D. The new process involves rolling compacting of two active metallic foils to fabricate the reactive feedstock, and computer controlled direct writing of reacting metal feedstock on a printing bed. Specifically, a self-propagating reaction is initiated by heating the end of reactive feedstock and the external heat is removed. Then, the highly heat-releasing reaction will propagate along the feedstock, melting the solid feedstock at the same time. The melted material can be deposited in a digitally controlled manner before turning solid and forming desired structures.

Contact Information

Name: Shyamala Rajagopalan

Email: SRajagopalan@tamu.edu

Phone: 979-862-3002