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Inconel 3D printed parts refer to components fabricated from Inconel superalloy powders using additive manufacturing (AM) methods. Inconel grades offer exceptional heat and corrosion resistance combined with high strength, making them ideally suited to aerospace, power generation, and other demanding applications.

Key properties of Inconel 3D printed parts:

  • High strength maintained to over 700°C
  • Withstand aggressive environments including oxidation, corrosion
  • Complex geometries produced directly from CAD models
  • Reduced lead times and buy-to-fly ratios vs subtractive machining
  • Choice of Inconel 625, 718 alloys and others to suit needs
  • Requires hot isostatic pressing (HIP) to eliminate internal voids

Continue reading to learn more about popular Inconel alloys, mechanical properties, post-processing, uses and part qualification.

inconel 3d printed part

Alloy Types

Common Inconel grades used in additive manufacturing include:

PaduanKandungan NikelFitur Utama
Inconel 62560% minExceptional corrosion resistance, oxidation resistance to 980°C
Inconel 71850-55%Highest strength maintained to 700°C, age hardening response
Inconel 939N/AHigh end service temperature from excellent coarsened grain structure stability

Tabel 1: Popular Inconel superalloys available for AM processing

These alloys offer exceptional performance under heat and corrosion exposure better than stainless steels. Inconel 718 sees widest adoption today but new grades will expand capabilities further.

Properti dari inconel 3d printed part

Key properties exhibited by Inconel 3D printed parts:

Kekuatan Suhu TinggiStrength maintained up to 700°C for age-hardened alloys
Thermal ResistanceService temperatures over 1000°C possible
Ketahanan KorosiExcellent is variety of acidic, marine environments
Ketahanan OksidasiProtective surface chromium oxide layer
Resistensi MerayapDeformation resistance under loads at high temps
KekerasanUp to Rockwell C 40-45 when age hardened

Tabel 2: Overview of mechanical and physical properties offered by Inconel AM alloys

The combination of strength, environmental resistance and stability under extreme temperatures makes Inconel an exceptionally versatile material system for critical applications.

Printed Part Accuracy

Dimensional accuracy and tolerances achievable with Inconel AM alloys:

Akurasi Dimensi±0.3% to ±0.5% as printed
Minimum Wall Thickness0.020 inches to 0.040 inches
Tolerances±0.005 inches common
Permukaan akhirUp to Ra 3.5 μm (140 μin) finish as printed

Tabel 3: Overview of printed accuracy and surface finish for Inconel AM parts

Post-processing like machining and finishing can further improve accuracy and surface finish. Data above is indicative – discuss specific requirements with candidate vendors for your application needs.

Part Testing of inconel 3d printed part

Qualifying Inconel AM components for end use requires standard testing protocols:

TesTujuanSample Methods
Analisis kimiaVerify alloy chemistry and microstructureOptical emission spectrometry, image analysis
Tensile testingMeasure tensile and yield strengthsASTM E8, ISO 6892
Stress rupture testingDetermine rupture strength over timeASTM E292
Ketangguhan patah tulangUnderstand crack propagation resistanceASTM E1820
Corrosion testingEvaluate material mass loss in environmentsASTM G31, ASTM G48
Non-destructive testingDetect surface/subsurface defectsPenetrant testing, CT scans

Tabel 4: Common test methods for qualifying Inconel AM printed parts

Data must comply with applicable industry specifications like AMS, ASME, AWS, etc. as dictated by the end application and operating environment. Discuss needed validation testing with AM vendors.


Industries using Inconel 3D printed parts for demanding environments:

DirgantaraBilah turbin, nozel roketMaintains strength at high operating temps
Pembangkit ListrikHeat exchangers, valvesCorrosion resistance with high temp strength
Minyak dan GasWellhead parts, fracturing componentsWithstand harsh downhole conditions
OtomotifTurbocharger housingsHandles exhaust heat and gases
Pengolahan KimiaReaction vessels, conduitsResilience against corrosive reactions

Tabel 5: Overview of Inconel AM parts usage across industries

Inconel alloys produce lightweight, high-performance components replacing conventionally fabricated hardware not capable of meeting application demands.

Post-Processing of inconel 3d printed part

Common secondary operations for Inconel AM printed parts:

Pengepresan Isostatik PanasEliminate internal voids and improve densityHigh pressure, high temp inert gas
Perlakuan PanasAdjust microstructure and finalize propertiesSolution annealing, aging profiles specific to alloy
PemesinanImprove dimensional accuracy and surface finishCNC milling/turning centers
PelapisEnhance wear, corrosion and thermal resistanceThermal spray, PVD, CVD coatings

Tabel 6: Recommended post-processing techniques for Inconel AM printed parts

Nearly all parts will undergo HIP and heat treatment before use. Additional subsurface checks like penetrant testing or CT scans also inform certification. Discuss protocols tailored to your component with AM vendors.

Analisis Biaya

ParameterNilai tipikal
Inconel Powder Cost$100-500 per kg
Rasio beli-ke-terbang1.5 : 1
Waktu Pimpin4-8 weeks for printed parts
Printer Utilization50-75%
Finishing Allowance30% of printed part cost

Table 7: Cost factors for Inconel AM part production

Significant powder reuse helps cost efficiency. Finishing steps like machining and coatings also add expense – budget 30% or more above printing costs depending on complexity.

Pros and Cons


  • Withstand much higher operating temps than stainless or titanium alloys
  • Components maintain high strength across temperature range
  • Unprecedented coolant channel geometries for enhanced heat transfer
  • As-printed parts rival or exceed mechanical properties of cast Inconel
  • Significantly lighter printed hardware than traditionally manufactured
  • Buy-to-fly ratios near 100% with very little wasted powder
  • Reduced lead times from on-demand digital inventories


  • Very high material costs starting around $100 per kg for powder
  • Low system productivity around 5 kg powder used per day
  • Significant parameter optimization required for new parts and alloys
  • Extensive qualification testing mandated for aerospace and nuclear
  • High operator skill level needed on specialized AM equipment
  • Powder reuse up to only 10-20 cycles before refresh
  • Porosity and residual stresses require HIP and finish machining
inconel 3d printed part

Pertanyaan yang Sering Diajukan

Q: What size Inconel parts can be 3D printed?

A: State-of-the-art systems accommodate build volumes up to 1,000 mm diameter by 600 mm height. Larger components must be segmented into sub-assemblies. Multi-laser platforms continue expanding part sizes further.

Q: Does Inconel printing require special facilities or equipment?

A: Inconel generally prints in inert argon gas chambers rather than with filters or vacuum systems. Otherwise standard metal AM machines apply without exotic additions. Handling fine powders dictates care without specific room requirements.

Q: What lead time can be expected for Inconel AM part orders?

A: Typical quoted lead times fall around 4-10 weeks depending on part size, post-processing and testing selected. Digital inventories mitigate delays so printed components ship faster than castings with supply shortages.

Q: What industries offer the best Inconel AM business opportunities?

A: Aerospace, space, petrochemical and nuclear sectors push adoption of performance alloys like Inconel. Medical also offers growth designing certified implants. Standard stainless and tool steel parts now commoditized so more exotic alloys gain interest.

Q: Does AM enable any novel Inconel applications not possible previously?

A: AM facilitates formerly impossible conformal cooling channels and hollow internal structures to enhance heat transfer in tight spaces. Parts also see use atop rockets and satellites where weights were traditionally prohibitive or machining inaccessible. Continued R&D expands future capabilities further still.

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