Graphmatech uses its graphene technology to push forward copper additive manufacturing

Researchers at Uppsala University, in collaboration with Swedish graphene materials company Graphmatech, have reported a potential breakthrough in the printability of copper for laser additive manufacturing (AM), significantly lowering the reflectivity of copper powder to achieve more dense printed parts.

Graphmatech's graphene technology unlocks the potential of copper additive manufacturing imageCopper powder was coated using Graphmatech’s patented graphene technology. Credit: Simon Tidén / Uppsala University

Additive manufacturing of metals can help produce customized and complex designs on demand and offer more sustainable manufacturing with reduced waste and lower material requirements. However, some metals, including pure copper, have proven a challenge due to their high reflectivity. At the wavelengths commonly used in laser powder bed fusion (the dominant technology in metal AM), only a small part of the energy is absorbed by the material, resulting in low density printed parts. This is what the team set out to address.

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Graphene applications, Graphene composites, Technical / Research