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J Nanosci Nanotechnol. 2011 Jan;11(1):249-55.

Study of micropart fabrication via 17-4 PH stainless nanopowder injection molding.

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Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Yeungnam University, Gyeongsangbuk-Do 712-749, Republic of Korea.


Micropart fabrication via 17-4 PH stainless nanopowder injection molding was investigated. The nanopowder was mixed with a binder that was based on wax to produce a feedstock composed of 45% powder and binder (the powder load). Initially, the fit and proper test was done before the micropart was made by making some bars of green samples, which the properties were examined after the sintering process. The examination involved the mechanical properties such as the porosity, hardness, and some of metallurgical aspects, such as the second-phase formation and the final compound after the sintering. The results showed that utilizing 17-4 PH stainless nanopowder is promising for micropart fabrication since it can form a nearly full-density sintered sample with a low porosity and good toughness, and can provide a smooth surface finish. After this, the investigations followed with the injection of the feedstock into the PDMS micromold that was formed by the nickel pattern from the X-Ray LIGA process. The green samples successfully produced a high-aspect-ratio sample with a thickness of up to 1 mm and an aspect ratio of 15 in the microchannel part. Then the green samples were sintered at 1,300 degrees C for 2 h, since from the initial test, they showed optimum parameters with nearly full density, low porosity, and a high degree of hardness. The research shows the excellent results of the application of the 17-4 PH stainless nanopowder to micropart fabrication.

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