6K Additive, a division of 6K and a leader in the production of sustainable advanced materials for additive manufacturing and energy storage, is collaborating with Space Coast-based aerospace AM specialist Morf3D, to qualify metal powders for additive (mass) production. Through this partnership, 6K Additive’s metal powders will be approved for use by Morf3D’s aerospace and defense application customers. Throughout the qualification process, Morf3D will manage the printing, characterization, post-processing, and data generation framework in order to qualify 6K Additive’s sustainably produced powders.
“By working with Morf3D, we’re able to leverage their deep industry experience and application expertise to help guide the qualification process,” said Frank Roberts, president of 6K Additive. “This is a conduit to acceptance by a demanding customer base in space, aviation, defense industries, and more. We want our powders to be part of manufacturing solutions for the most intense applications in additive manufacturing and partnering with Morf3D provides us with another channel to these important customers.”
Based in El Segundo, CA, Morf3D, will use domestic, sustainably sourced 6K Additive powders to react quickly to customer needs once they have completed qualification. The sustainable sourcing of powders, as well as their high quality, is a key aspect for Morf3D’s customer requirements. 6K’s UniMelt technology upcycles used and end-of-life powders, scrap material, and test parts into feedstock to produce its highly spherical powders. This mutually beneficial circular economy allows Morf3D to reduce cost and waste while gaining access to premium quality metal powers for production.
“6K Additive’s innovative business model helps us leverage our low-value waste streams into high-value credits against virgin powder sales,” said Dr. Behrang Poorganji, vice president of material technology at Morf3D. “By using 6K Additive powders, we are able to source materials like high-temperature refractories at production scale, with the added benefit of using a US-based supplier.”
6K Additive operates a state-of-the-art, 45,000 sq/ft powder production facility in Burgettstown, PA with up to 10 fully operational UniMelt microwave plasma systems. The commercially available sustainable metal powders that 6K Additive currently produces include Ti6Al4V (Grade 5 and Grade 23), SS316L and nickel superalloys Ni718 and Ni625, along with the announced refractory materials.