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Consolidation of pure molybdenum through laser powder bed fusion and other additive manufacturing techniques is complicated by a high melting temperature, thermal conductivity and ductile-to-brittle transition temperature. Nano-sized SiC particles (0.1 wt%) were homogeneously mixed with molybdenum powder and the printing characteristics, chemical composition, microstructure, mechanical properties were compared to pure molybdenum for scan speeds of 100, 200, 400, and 800 mm/s. The addition of SiC improved the optically determined density and flexural strength at 400 mm/s by 92% and 80%, respectively. The oxygen content was reduced by an average of 52% over the four scan speeds analyzed. Two mechanisms of oxygen reduction were identified as responsible for the improvements: oxidation of free carbon and the creation of secondary phase nanoparticles. This study illustrates the promising influence of nanoparticle additions to refractory metals in laser powder bed fusion.


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