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VELO3D, a metal additive manufacturing (AM a.k.a 3D printing) solutions provider, will begin the commercial release of a new production process for additively manufactured parts in Hastelloy X, a nickel-based alloy suitable for laser powder-bed fusion (LPBF) process. The material is exceptionally resistant to corrosion cracking and oxidation. Hastelloy X is most often used to manufacture parts for gas turbine engines for combustion-zone components due to its high temperature strength.
“Power generation applications such as industrial gas turbines are a key focus for VELO3D so it is important that we qualify the right materials to serve that market,” states Benny Buller, founder and CEO of VELO3D. “We will continue to add more of these types of compatible materials that enable customers to print parts they couldn’t before, yet with even better material properties than those produced by traditional manufacturing.”
Air mobility and power generation company, Sierra Turbines, recently partnered with VELO3D to print a prototype for their 20-kilowatt microturbine engine with a unicore in Hastelloy X. They aim to print 95 percent of their engine through metal additive manufacturing.
VELO3D is well-known for enabling geometric freedom through its patented SupportFree process, which reduces the consideration of support structures for complex passageways, shallow overhangs and low angles. Coupled with their non-contact recoater, VELO3D’s printing process can create the intricate cooling passageways and fuel delivery channels needed to achieve high-output fluid transmission and electrical power.
The company recently announced that a 1-meter tall system will be available in Q4 2020. For the first time with laser powder-bed fusion, meter-tall parts can be printed without support structures, creating new part opportunities for industrial applications.
Unicore of a 20-kilowatt microturbine engine, being developed by Sierra Turbines, that was 3D printed on a VELO3D Sapphire metal AM system. The nickel-based alloy is exceptionally resistant to corrosion cracking and oxidation and is most often used to manufacture parts for combustion-zone gas turbine engines due to its high temperature strength. Image courtesy VELO3D[/caption]