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A Comparison of Particle Size Distribution and Morphology Data acquired using Lab-based and Commercially Available Techniques: Application to Stainless Steel Powder

Published

Author(s)

Justin Whiting, Edward Garboczi, Vipin Tondare, John Henry Scott, Alkan Donmez, Shawn P. Moylan

Abstract

The particle size distribution (PSD) and particlemorphology ofmetal powders undoubtedly affects the quality of parts produced by additivemanufacturing (AM). It is, therefore, crucial to accurately knowthe PSD and morphology of these powders. There exist severalmeasurement techniques for these quantities, but since eachmethod is based on different physical phenomena,which are sensitive to different aspects of a particle's shape and size, it is unclear howthemeasured PSDs and morphology compare to one another. In this study, five different techniques are used: sieve analysis, dynamic imaging analysis, laser diffraction analysis, X-ray computed tomography (XCT), and scanning electron microscopy. The first three are commonly used in the powder metallurgy field while the last two are laboratory-based tools capable of providing robust size and shape data. Nominally identical samples of stainless-steel powders were produced via riffling, and each technique was employed to measure effectively the same PSD and in some cases themorphology. In this paper, the differences among these measurement techniques are explored by a comparison of themeasured results. Besides the randomvariations of the variousmeasurement processes, the difference in the results is partly due to the fact that the particles are not perfectly spherical and that there are many multi-particles present. Each of these affect the principle of each method differently. Three-dimensional particle morphology and size data collected via XCT is used to provide insight regarding the discrepancies among other sizing and morphology measurement techniques.
Citation
Powder Technology

Keywords

Additive Manufacturing, Powder Metrology, Particle size distribution, Sizing techniques

Citation

Whiting, J. , Garboczi, E. , Tondare, V. , Scott, J. , Donmez, A. and Moylan, S. (2021), A Comparison of Particle Size Distribution and Morphology Data acquired using Lab-based and Commercially Available Techniques: Application to Stainless Steel Powder, Powder Technology, [online], https://doi.org/10.1016/j.powtec.2021.10.063, https://tsapps.nist.gov/publication/get_pdf.cfm?pub_id=932029 (Accessed August 7, 2022)
Created November 17, 2021, Updated February 8, 2022