Abstract: The Alnico 8 alloy has been printed using the selective laser melting additive manufacturing approach, resulting in material with magnetic properties in the as-printed state comparable to properties produced by conventional casting or powder metallurgy routes. Microstructural characterization in 3D, via electron backscattered diffraction (EBSD) in a TriBeam microscope, simultaneously reveals a fine-scale grain structure, grain orientations and sub-grain misorientation gradients as a function of proximity to spherical pores that form during the print process. The nanostructure of the 3D printed part has the same highly coherent spinodal α1//α2 structure observed in conventionally fabricated Alnico 8, which gives rise to a coercivity (Hc) of 51.2 kA m-1. Further investigation of the phase constituents by TEM analysis provides an understanding of the microstructure evolution during the additive manufacturing process. Modified processing pathways for improved microstructure and properties are discussed.

TriBeam tomography and microstructure evolution in additively manufactured Alnico magnets
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DOI: 10.1016/j.mattod.2021.05.003