Direct Selective Laser Sintering of Reaction Bonded Silicon Carbide
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Three-dimensional reaction bonded silicon carbide (SiSiC or RBSC) parts have been produced by direct selective laser sintering (SLS). Unlike previously investigated processing routes, which make use of a sacrificial polymer binder to form green parts, the parts in this work are built by scanning subsequent layers composed of a mixture of silicon and silicon carbide powders. A fibre laser is used to selectively melt the silicon under an inert argon atmosphere, resulting in porous preforms of sufficient strength for further handling and processing. After impregnation with a graphite suspension and infiltration with liquid Si at 1450°C, highly dense reaction bonded silicon carbide parts are obtained.