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Surface methods for monitoring the densification of parts in the selective laser sintering process

Surface methods for monitoring the densification of parts in the selective laser sintering process Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to characterize polyamide parts prepared by the SLS process using techniques that are dependent on surface properties and compare the results to density measurements in order to assess which technique better reflects the degree of densification achieved using different laser power levels. Design/methodology/approach – Fabrication of Nylon 12 (Duraform PA) samples and their characterization by apparent density measurements, perfilometry, Raman spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy, specific surface area and contact angle measurements. Findings – Methods dependent on surface analysis are not suitable indicators of the degree of sample densification. Among the surface methods, the results from Raman spectroscopy are the ones with the best performance. Incipient sintering of the superficial layers and raw material powder on the surface, inherent to the parts made by the SLS process, strongly interfere with the characterization. Originality/value – Quantitative comparison of a number of surface probing methods for monitoring densification of SLS parts. Characterization of sample surfaces with and without raw material powder. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Rapid Prototyping Journal Emerald Publishing

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2014 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1355-2546
DOI
10.1108/RPJ-05-2012-0040
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to characterize polyamide parts prepared by the SLS process using techniques that are dependent on surface properties and compare the results to density measurements in order to assess which technique better reflects the degree of densification achieved using different laser power levels. Design/methodology/approach – Fabrication of Nylon 12 (Duraform PA) samples and their characterization by apparent density measurements, perfilometry, Raman spectroscopy, scanning electron microscopy, specific surface area and contact angle measurements. Findings – Methods dependent on surface analysis are not suitable indicators of the degree of sample densification. Among the surface methods, the results from Raman spectroscopy are the ones with the best performance. Incipient sintering of the superficial layers and raw material powder on the surface, inherent to the parts made by the SLS process, strongly interfere with the characterization. Originality/value – Quantitative comparison of a number of surface probing methods for monitoring densification of SLS parts. Characterization of sample surfaces with and without raw material powder.

Journal

Rapid Prototyping JournalEmerald Publishing

Published: Mar 11, 2014

Keywords: Polymers; Selective laser sintering; Surface properties of materials

References