Learn how NPL’s science and engineering expertise can support UK ventilator manufacturers


Making additive manufacturing more reliable

The need

Confidence in the performance of metallic parts made by additive manufacturing is a significant barrier to their uptake by industry. Additive manufacturing product development is in a state of flux as processing methods continue to evolve, with varying properties and limited performance data. There is also uncertainty on the best performance testing techniques, especially for demanding applications in oil and gas, aerospace and healthcare.

We are conducting a multidisciplinary project, developing the underpinning measurement to provide confidence in additive manufacturing product deployment.

The impact

The focus of this project is on the metallic powder feedstock and the influence its quality has through the product life cycle. Our approach considers the whole life-cycle strategy, assessing the feedstock in powder form, as well as the manufactured parts to determine the influence of feedstock on the final manufactured part properties.

We are establishing the link between raw materials, processing variables and physical, microstructural, and mechanical properties, to help develop new testing standards and methodologies. These will help industy to accurately compare the performance, durability and lifetime of additive manufactured parts with those made out of conventionally processed alloys. By increasing understanding of these processes and parts, we can help to unlock the benefits of additive manufacturing in driving efficiency and flexibility, across industries.