3D Metal Printing Materials

SLM Materials for
Additive Manufacturing
of Metal Parts

3D Metal Printing Materials for SLM metal powders
high precision cnc components and parts for various industries

Metal 3D printing materials

The development of metal additive manufacturing highly relies on the metal material science. Both SLM and DLSM 3D printing use the metal powders to create metal parts. Different metal powders have different material properties, which determine the difficulty in printing process. Tool steel powders can be easier printed than aluminum alloy powders since the aluminum alloys has higher viscosity than tool steel at high temperature.
In Additions, some hard materials are difficult to be cut in CNC approach, which increases the manufacturing cost, such as tool steel and titanium. On the contrary, these materials are easier for printing in metal additive manufacturing. The utilization of metal powders will cut down the manufacturing cost and gain the better performance than CNC machining.
Explore More

Exzellenc offers SLM Metal AM for High Performance Metal Parts

Metal 3D printing is now Exzellenc's core business, we work with famouse research institutes to provide outstanding SLM solutions for metal AM using different materials. Metal AM is expected as top-value process in future manufacturing, which can burst out tremendous competivity aginst the other process. Join us, let's build the amazing metal parts.
Get Quote

Stain Steel

Stainless steel is the most mommon used in metal AM, due to its excellent strength and stiffness, which has an essential composition of chromium offering outstanding corrosion resistance. In Metal AM there are two different types stainless steels, Austenitic stainless steels(316L) and Martensitic stainless steels(17-4 PH).

Tool Steel

Just like the name suggest, tool steel is an ideal option to produce tooling since they are extremly hard to offer long term mass production. furthermore, tool steel is abration resistance and can be used in high termperature, all these properties make it to withstand the tough conditions such as stamps, cuts, tools, molds and forms. the other reason for being good choice for metal AM is that, ther are expensive and difficult to be machined. Popular powders used like A2, D2 and H13 tool steel.


Most metal material can be use for cnc machining, but for some superalloys, whose price will scare conventional process, though, they have excellent mechinical properties. Inconel 625 is one of the superalloys, which has highly strong, corrosion resistance and tough, best for building turbines and rockets using metal AM process. The other type 718 are also expensive, but not heat resistant compared to 625. Both can be purchase in form of powder.


Titanium is another metal that rare used in conventional machining as its definitely expensive to be substract, but ideal in metal AM process. The positive attributions of Titanium include heat resistant, strenghth-to-weigh-ratio and chemical resistant. The 3D printed titanium is highly strong and precise up to 0.25mm, which make it to be the best material for jewelry printing using Select Laser Melting(SLM). Due to the light weight and excellent performance, titanium is often printed in aircrft industry.


Unlike the CNC machining with aluminum, 3D printed aluminum has not so many types to be choose, commonly sind AlSi12 and AlSi10Mg. The additve silicon offers makes the powders more thermal resistance. The mixtures of silicon and magnesium give more excellent properties, high strenth and stiffness. All these features allow it to print metal parts with complex geometry.

Requirements for Metal Powder Materials

Metal powder material is the raw material of metal 3D printing process, and the basic properties of its powder have a great relationship with the quality of the final molded product. The requirements of metal 3D printing for powder mainly lie in chemical composition, particle shape, particle size and particle size distribution, fluidity, recyclability, etc. The specific requirements are explained below.

Chemical Composition

The main chemical components of the raw materials include metal elements and impurity components. The main metal elements commonly used are Fe, Ti, Ni, Al, Cu, Co, Cr, and precious metals such as Ag and Au. The impurity components include Si, Mn, C, S, P, O, etc. in the reduced iron, other impurities mixed from raw materials and powder production, and water and other gases adsorbed on the surface of the powder.

During the molding process, impurities may react with the matrix, changing the properties of the matrix and negatively affecting the quality of the part. The presence of inclusions will also cause uneven melting of the powder, which is likely to cause internal defects in the product. When the oxygen content of the powder is high, the metal powder is not only easy to be oxidized to form an oxide film, but also leads to spheroidization, which affects the density and quality of the parts.

Therefore, it is necessary to strictly control the impurities and inclusions of the raw material powder to ensure the quality of the product. Therefore, the metal powder for metal AM needs to use the metal powder raw material with higher purity.

metal powder for metal 3d printing

Manufacturing processes and properties of Metal Powder

shape requirements: Common particle shapes are spherical, nearly spherical, flakes, needles and other irregular shapes. Irregular particles have a larger surface area, which is beneficial to increase the sintering drive. However, powder particles with high sphericity have good fluidity and uniform powder feeding and powder distribution, which is beneficial to improve the density and uniformity of the parts. Therefore, powder particles for 3D printing are generally required to be spherical or nearly spherical.

Powder particle size and particle size distribution:Powder particle size and particle size distribution. Studies have shown that the powder is melted and sintered by directly absorbing the energy of the laser or electron beam scanning. In addition, the powder particle size is small, the gap between particles is small, the bulk density is high, and the compactness of the parts after forming is high, so it is beneficial to improve the strength and surface quality of the product. However, if the particle size of the powder is too small, the powder is prone to adhesion and agglomeration, which leads to a decrease in the fluidity of the powder, which affects the transportation of the powder and the uniformity of the powder distribution.

Density:The bulk density is the density of the powder when it is naturally stacked, and the tapped density is the density after vibration. The powder with good sphericity and wide particle size distribution has high bulk density and low porosity, and the formed parts have high density and good forming quality.

Liquidity: The fluidity of the powder directly affects the uniformity of powder spreading or the stability of powder feeding. The powder fluidity is too poor, which is easy to cause uneven thickness of the powder layer and uneven metal melting in the scanning area, resulting in uneven internal structure of the part and affecting the forming quality; while the powder with high fluidity is easy to fluidize, deposit uniformly, and the powder The utilization rate is high, which is conducive to improving the dimensional accuracy and uniform densification of the surface of the 3D printed parts.

Recycling: After the 3D printing process, the unmelted powder left in the powder bed can still be used by sieving and recycling. However, in the high temperature environment for a long time, the powder in the powder bed will have certain performance changes. The recovery rate needs to be selected with the specific process.

Why Exzellenc for Your Metal 3D Printing Service

Why Exzellenc for Your Metal 3D Printing Service


Exzellenc works with research institutes, specializing on the selective laser melten SLM since 2018, with KNOW-HOW of metal additive manufacturing and metal powder technologies.
Why Exzellenc for Your Metal 3D Printing Service


Exzellenc's in metal AM team are composed of university professors and professional technicians, from research into industrial applications, accelorate the metal AM industry.
Why Exzellenc for Your Metal 3D Printing Service


Only focus on cutting-edge metal part manufacturing, using metal 3D printing and CNC machining to offer our customers the best manufacturing solutions.
Innovation-driven gives us endless posibilities to change the future of manufacturing.
Please Send Your Inquiry & 3D Drawings to Our E-Mail