Hamburg-based aluminum specialist Fehrmann ALLOYS has launched a new high-performance aluminum alloy for 3D printing, AlMgty 90, at Formnext Connect 2020.
AlMgty 90 is released just 10 months after the launch of the firm’s AlMgty 80, and is the latest aluminum powder to be added to Fehrmann’s patented alloy system, the AlMgty-family.
Building on the properties of the AlMgty 80, the new material exhibits increased strength and a 25 percent higher hardness than its predecessor.
AlMgty is a high-performance aluminum powder known for its excellent mechanical properties in addition to being anodisable, polishable, and seawater-resistant. The material is used in Selective Laser Melting (SLM) and Laser Metal Deposition (LMD) 3D printing processes.
Consisting solely of generally available components, Fehrmanns can vary the components of AlMgty to create different mechanical properties in line with customer requirements.
Earlier this year, the firm introduced a silicon-free high-performance aluminum alloy of AlMgty which makes it possible to add color to metal parts produced by 3D printing. Traditionally, components made of AlSi10Mg alloy cannot be anodized well due to the silicon content of nine to 11 percent. AlMgty changes this, as it does not require silicon. This means that parts and components printed with AlMgty can be easily anodized in different colors as either corrosion protection or for decorative purposes.
The company holds 40 years’ experience in developing high-performance aluminum alloys, and has a high-tech innovation centre for new alloys designed for 3D printing. Fehrmanns recently appointed Dr. Achim Tappe, previously of NASA and The Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, as its new Chief Digital Officer (CDO). In the newly-created role, Tappe is responsible for supporting material development for metal additive manufacturing using machine learning/AI and digital transformation tools.
The latest addition to Fehrmann’s aluminum alloy family, AlMgty 90 retains many of the properties characterized by the earlier-released AlMgty 80, including being corrosion resistant, anodizable, and polishable.
The main difference between the two alloys is improved strength, as AlMgty 90 features a tensile strength of more than 400 MPa and an elongation at break of less than 25 percent. As a result, the material enables slimmer and lighter constructions in 3D printing and subsequently will see less material used and less exposure time throughout builds.
AlMgty 90 also exhibits a 25 percent higher hardness than AlMgty 80, and has a density of 99 percent. With these improved properties, it is hoped that AlMgty 90 can significantly improve the productivity of metal 3D printing processes while reducing material cost and printing times.
Material innovations in metal 3D printing
New powders are being continually qualified for metal 3D printing, with new applications for the technology regularly arising.
In 2019, Swedish binder jetting metal 3D printer manufacturer Digital Metal launched two superalloys intended for use in extreme applications within the aerospace, automotive, and industrial sectors. Since then, digital prototyping specialist Protolabs has unveiled a new cobalt chrome superalloy for its metal laser sintering process designed to disrupt the oil and gas industries, and metal additive manufacturing specialist Amaero announced its high-performance 3D printing aluminum alloy, Amaero HOT Al, has entered the final stage of international patent approval.
Elsewhere, EOS, the global leader in LB-PBF systems, expanded its offering of AM materials with the release of eight new metal powders and processes for use with its M 290, M 300-4, and M 400-4 3D printing systems, while chemicals and engineering materials firm 5N Plus made its move into the 3D printing market with the launch of a new metal powder portfolio.
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Featured image shows Fehrmann ALLOYS has released the AlMgty 90. Image via Fehrmann ALLOYS.