Ames Laboratory; Materials Science and Engineering
Ames Laboratory, Materials Science and Engineering
Permanent magnets without rare earth (RE) elements, such as alnico, will improve supply stability and potentially decrease permanent magnet cost, especially for traction drive motors and other increased temperature applications. Commercial alnico magnets with the highest energy product are produced by directional solidification (DS) to achieve a <001> columnar grain orientation followed by significant final machining, adding to the high cost. Additive manufacturing (AM) is an effective method to process near net-shape parts with minimal final machining of complex geometries. AM also, has potential for texture/grain orientation control and compositionally graded structures. This report describes fabrication of alnico magnets by AM using both laser engineered net shaping (LENS)/directed energy deposition (DED) and electron beam melting powder bed fusion (EBM/PBF). High pressure gas atomized (HPGA) pre-alloyed alnico powders, with high purity and sphericity, were built into cylindrical and rectangular samples, followed by magnetic annealing (MA) and a full heat treatment (FHT). The magnetic properties of these AM processed specimens were different from their cast and sintered counterparts of the same composition and show a great sensitivity to heat treatment. The AM process parameters used in this developmental study did not yet result in any preferred texture within the alnico AM builds. These findings demonstrate feasibility for near net-shape processing of alnico permanent magnets for use in next generation traction drive motors and other applications requiring increased operating temperatures and/or complex engineered part geometries, especially with further AM process development for texture control.
DOE Contract Number(s)
Department of Energy Subject Categories
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE
Iowa State University Digital Repository, Ames IA (United States)