Exploring the possibility of a stainless steel and glass composite produced by additive manufacturing

G. Sander, D. Jiang, Y. Wu, N. Birbilis

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The production of components using powder bed fusion presents unique possibilities for manufacturing. The process of selective laser melting (SLM) can permit fusion of powders, including powder blends and alloys comprised from elemental powders. In this context, exploring the possibility of making composites by blending stainless steel 316 L and glass powder (the latter being a waste product) was explored. Such composites were investigated on the basis of (i) significant reduction in component cost, as glass powder waste is a common industrial by-product, (ii) upgrading recycled waste, (iii) the possibility of lowering component density (the density of glass is less than three times that of stainless steel), and (iv) the possibility of unique physical properties if glass remains amorphous. Herein, laser scan strategies were optimised in order to produce solid cubes and tensile test specimens. Microstructural and phase analysis were carried out by electron microscopy and x-ray techniques. Unique Cr[sbnd]Si oxides were observed in the manufactured microstructure. The work herein presents an exploratory approach into the development of novel engineered composites utilising additive manufacturing.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109179
Number of pages11
JournalMaterials and Design
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020


  • 316 L
  • Composites
  • Glass
  • Materials development
  • Selective laser melting
  • Stainless steel

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