An investigation of the anisotropic properties of heat-treated maraging steel grade 300 processed by laser powder bed fusion
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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In order to explore the possibilities enabled by laser beam powder bed fusion of metals (PBF-LB/M), reliable material models are necessary to optimize designs with respect to weight and stiffness. Due to the unique processing conditions in PBF-LB/M, materials often develop a dominating microstructure that leads to anisotropic mechanical properties, and thus isotropic material models fail to account for the orientation-dependent mechanical properties. To investigate the anisotropy of 18Ni300 maraging steel, tensile specimens were built in seven different orientations. The specimens were heat treated at two different conditions and tested for their tensile properties using digital image correlation (DIC) technique. The microstructure and fracture surfaces are investigated with scanning electron microscope and electron backscatter diffraction. The tensile properties are typical for the material, with a yield strength in the range of 1850 MPa to 1950 MPa, and ultimate tensile strength in the range of 1900 MPa to 2000 MPa. The elastic modulus is 180 GPa, and the elongation at fracture is in the range of 2–6% for all specimens. The strain fields analysed with DIC reveals anisotropic straining in both the elastic and plastic parts of the flow curve for both direct ageing and solution treatment plus ageing specimens. In the former condition, the elastic anisotropy is dictated by the fraction of melt pool boundaries on the transverse surfaces of the specimens. When the material is solution treated prior to ageing, the melt pool boundary effect was supressed.