Movement of powder bed material during the selective laser sintering of bisphenol-A polycarbonate

K.M. Fan, W.L. Cheung, I. Gibson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to report on a study of the movement of the powder bed material during selective laser sintering (SLS) of bisphenol-A polycarbonate (PC) powder and its effect on the morphology of the sintered specimen.

Design/methodology/approach: Two sintering experiments, i.e. single-spot laser sintering and raster-scan laser sintering, were carried out and the material movement mechanisms were investigated in situ and subsequently by scanning electron microscopy.

Findings: During the raster-scan laser sintering process, the movement of the powder was found to be primarily perpendicular to the scanning direction. When sintering at a high laser power, it significantly affected the surface morphology of the sintered specimens and parallel surface bands occurred along the scanning direction.

Research limitations/implications: Experiments were carried out on a modified laser engraving machine rather than a commercial SLS machine.

Practical implications: A schematic model of the material movement mechanism for each of the sintering strategies is presented.

Originality/value: The results further the understanding of the sintering behaviour of the powder bed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)188-198
Number of pages11
JournalRapid prototyping journal
Volume11
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2005
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Polymers
  • Sintering
  • Stress (materials)

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