Influences of Surface, Heat Treatment, and Print Orientation on the Anisotropy of the Mechanical Properties and the Impact Strength of Ti 6Al 4V Processed by Laser Powder Bed Fusion

Benjamin Meier*, N. Godja, Fernando Gustavo Warchomicka, Carlos Alberto Belei Feliciano, Sandra Schäfer, A. Schindel, Gregor Palcynski, Reinhard KAINDL, Wolfgang Waldhauser, Christof Sommitsch

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The scope of this work is to provide an overview of the influences of process parameters, print orientation, and post-process treatments of Ti6AlV4 processed by laser powder bed fusion on its microstructure and physical and mechanical properties and their anisotropic behavior. To avoid the influence of changes in powder quality and ensure comparability, experiments were carried out using a single batch of virgin powder. First, characterization of the density and surface roughness was performed to optimize the process parameters utilizing design of experiment. Tensile, notched bar impact and compression test specimens were built in three different orientations: vertically, horizontally, and inclined at 45° to the build plate. Later, the influence of the staircase effect and the possible course of anisotropy from vertical to horizontal were investigated. Subsequently, heat treatments for stress relief, furnace annealing, and hot isostatic pressing were performed. In addition to as-built samples, mechanical machining and a two-step electrochemical polishing surface treatment were applied to investigate the influence of the surface roughness. With parameter optimization, a relative density of 99.8% was achieved, and surface roughness was improved over default parameters, reducing Ra by up to 7 µm. Electrochemical polishing is a viable way to decrease the surface roughness. An Ra value of 1 µm and an Rz value of 4 µm can be achieved for 45° downskin surfaces with as-built surface roughness values of Ra 24 µm and Rz 117 µm. As-built and stress-relieved conditions show little anisotropy in their yield and tensile strength (max 2.7%), but there is a strong influence of the build orientation on necking, and brittle fracture behavior is shown due to the martensitic microstructure (up to 70%). Heat treatment can increase the ductility and further decrease the strength anisotropy with both furnace annealing and hot isostatic pressing delivering similar results for tensile properties, while angled samples exhibit behavior that is closer to vertical than horizontal, indicating a non-linear change in break behavior. Electrochemical polishing increases fracture necking, and its isotropy drastically increases from 4% to over 30% compared with as-built parts, which is close to the level of the machined specimen.

Original languageEnglish
Article number87
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Manufacturing and Materials Processing
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 14 Aug 2022


  • anisotropy
  • compression strength
  • electrochemical polishing
  • heat treatment
  • impact strength
  • L-PBF
  • parameter optimization
  • surface treatment
  • tensile strength
  • Ti6Al4V

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

Fields of Expertise

  • Advanced Materials Science


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