Is electrostatics the next key parameter to manage AM processes?
This is a big trend we observe in the AM field; electrostatics is causing trouble in the printers. From the conveying of the powder to the powder bed itself.
Different materials, different conditions from the storage to the conditioned environment in the machine, the possibilities for an electrostatic charge build-up are huge.
What is the risk?
The powder can block the tubes during the conveying. The powder can stick on the recoater or on the walls and thus make a poor powder bed.
The downtime of the printer has its costs.
What is the solution?
Prevent this issue by measuring the tendency to charge of your powders. So, you will know beforehand putting the powder into the machine, how the powder against a specified material will charge.
Thanks to the GranuCharge, you have the solution.
You can compare between your powders, and measure the triboelectric effect of the powders under a controlled relative humidity level.
In Canada, the company Equispheres, and both universities McGill and Waterloo use the GranuCharge instrument to this end.