Microstructures and surface roughness of EBM produced Ti-6Al-4V

Author: Safdar Adnan; Malmö Högskola; []

Keywords: EBM; Ti-6Al-4V;

Abstract: The work presented in this dissertation is concerned with the microstructures andsurface roughness of test slabs of Ti-6Al-4V produced by one of powder based AdditiveManufacturing (AM) technique namely Electron Beam melting (EBM). The effects of processparameters of a EBM system and geometry factors of a EBM build such as slabs’ thickness andheight etc. on the microstructure and the surface roughness of the EBM produced Ti-6Al-4Vhave being investigated. The processing parameters of the EBM system involved in the presentwork include beam current, scan speed, offset focus and scanning length etc. In this study threedifferent batches of samples were prepared. Microstructures of EBM built Ti-6Al-4V werestudied using Optical Microscopy (OM), Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), TransmissionElectron Microscopy (TEM), and X-ray diffraction (XRD). Confocal microscopy and imageanalysis codes ImageJ’s routine SurfCharJ were used to quantify the surface roughness of the testslabs. The microstructures of EBM built Ti-6Al-4V in general consist of columnar grains of priorβ phase. Inside the columnar grains there is a typical (α+β) microstructure of titanium alloyscontaining Widmanstätten α platelets and rod-shaped β phase. Grain boundary α layer has alsobeen observed on the grain boundaries of prior b columnar grains. By using TEM, the β phase inEBM built Ti-6Al-4V has been identified as a rod-like structure located on the grain boundariesof the fine a grains and often grows up along the build direction. The size of the β rods is about200nm and the distance between the β rods is ranged between 0.5 -2μm. Chemical compositionsfor different phases have been measured by TEM/EDX and volume fraction of the β phase in theEBM Ti-6Al-4V has been determined to be 2.7%. The phase transformation sequence in EBMbuilt Ti-6Al-4V has been discussed according to processing history and microstructuresobserved. It has been observed that, the size, number and geometry of prior β columnar graindepend on the sample thickness and other process parameters setting. The diameter of columnargrain varies between 2-70μm. The increase in size, number and regularity of columnar grains hasbeen observed with increase in sample thickness, beam energy density and scanning length.While with increase in height of the build it decreases. The length and smoothness of α plateletsincreases with increase in diameter of prior β columnar grain. The β phase rods are unaffected bysample thickness and process parameter settings. The sample thickness and beam energy densityhas a strong effect on the surface roughness of the test slabs. The value of surface roughnesscoefficient Ra for different test slabs varies between 1-20μm. It is observed that the surfaceroughness increases of the test slab increases with increase in thickness of the slab and beamenergy density. The possible reasons for these variations in microstructures and surfaceroughness have been discussed.