Ames Laboratory Critical Material Institute Takes Major Step Toward Printed Anisotropic Magnets

October 2, 2018

DOE/Ames Laboratory

Researchers have taken a major step toward printed, aligned anisotropic magnets via additive manufacturing processes.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Critical Materials Institute has taken a major step toward printed, aligned anisotropic magnets via additive manufacturing processes.

The Energy Innovation Hub manufactured hybrid nylon bonded neodymium-iron-boron and samarium-iron-nitrogen magnets using the Big Area Additive Manufacturing (BAAM) located at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

“The application of additive manufacturing to magnet production is relatively new, and there are challenges to overcome between the nature of the process and the end properties of the product,” said Ikenna Nlebedim, a scientist at the CMI.

A post-printing alignment process with applied electromagnetic fields and heat allows the researchers to tune the magnetic properties of the magnet without deforming its printed shape.

“For 3D printed anisotropic bonded magnets, a one-step print and align process is the ultimate goal but still needs work to be successful,” said Nlebedim. “We continue to pursue that goal.”

By applying magnetic alignment, the researchers were able to improve magnetic performance of the already dysprosium-free composite bonded magnet without using more critical materials. “This means more economical use of expensive and critical rare earth materials,” said Nlebedim.

The research is discussed in the paper, “Additive Manufacturing of anisotropic hybrid NdFeB-SmFeN nylon composite bonded magnets,” co-authored by Kinjal Ghandha, Ling Li, I.C. Nlebedim, Brian K. Post, Vlastimil Kunc, Brian C. Sales, James Bell, and M. Parans Paranthaman; and published in the Journal of Magnetism and Magnetic Materials.

“The application of additive manufacturing to magnet production is relatively new, and there are challenges to overcome between the nature of the process and the end properties of the product,” said Ikenna Nlebedim, a scientist at the CMI.

A post-printing alignment process with applied electromagnetic fields and heat allows the researchers to tune the magnetic properties of the magnet without deforming its printed shape.

“For 3D printed anisotropic bonded magnets, a one-step print and align process is the ultimate goal but still needs work to be successful,” said Nlebedim. “We continue to pursue that goal.”

By applying magnetic alignment, the researchers were able to improve magnetic performance of the already dysprosium-free composite bonded magnet without using more critical materials. “This means more economical use of expensive and critical rare earth materials,” said Nlebedim.

The research is discussed in the paper, “Additive Manufacturing of anisotropic hybrid NdFeB-SmFeN nylon composite bonded magnets,” co-authored by Kinjal Ghandha, Ling Li, I.C. Nlebedim, Brian K. Post, Vlastimil Kunc, Brian C. Sales, James Bell, and M. Parans Paranthaman; and published in the Journal of Magnetism and Magnetic Materials.

The Critical Materials Institute is a Department of Energy Innovation Hub led by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Ames Laboratory and supported by the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s Advanced Manufacturing Office, which supports early-stage research to advance innovation in U.S. manufacturing and promote American economic growth and energy security. CMI seeks ways to eliminate and reduce reliance on rare-earth metals and other materials critical to the success of clean energy technologies.

Story Source:

Materials provided by DOE/Ames Laboratory. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Kinjal Gandha, Ling Li, I.C. Nlebedim, Brian K. Post, Vlastimil Kunc, Brian C. Sales, James Bell, M. Parans Paranthaman. Additive manufacturing of anisotropic hybrid NdFeB-SmFeN nylon composite bonded magnets. Journal of Magnetism and Magnetic Materials, 2018; 467: 8 DOI: 10.1016/j.jmmm.2018.07.021
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