Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Smart Structures, School of Computing Engineering and Mathematics, Western Sydney University, Australia. His research interests cover Industry 4.0, Additive Manufacturing, Advanced Engineering Materials and Structures (Metals and Composites), Multi-scale Modelling of Materials and Structures, Metal Forming and Metal Surface Treatment.
Abstract—A homogenous distribution of powder particles and binders in metal injection molding (MIM) feedstock, and good flowability, are important characteristics as these help to reduce powder-binder separation and achieve isotropic reduction after sintering. To avoid problems in these areas, this paper focuses on determining feedstock properties and studying the effect of TaC powder as a grain growth inhibitor on the rheological behavior of MIM feedstock. A raw material of WC-6%Co, together with palm stearin and a polyethylene binder system, was used as feedstock, tailored with different TaC loadings of 0.4%, 0.8%, and 1.2% by weight. The homogenous feedstock, mixed by ball milling and with a Brabender mixer, was subjected to rheology testing at different temperatures. The results indicated that all feedstock formulations exhibited good pseudoplastic behavior within acceptable ranges in MIM, with a TaC content of 0.8 wt% giving the optimum rheological properties.
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