ADAPT Consortium Develops Shape Memory Alloys Suitable for Additive Manufacturing Processes
3D printed bone staples and vertebrae made from NiTi by Elementum 3D on an EOS M290 printer. (Image source: ADAPT)
Additive manufacturing has been a boon to many types of industries, but certain industrial processes simply aren’t suited for it because either the process of the materials (or both) can’t be printed using existing technology. Shape memory alloys (SMAs) are one of those materials that haven’t found their way in AM to date. SMAs are materials that can be deformed at low temperatures, then recover their original shape upon heating. Additive manufacturing aside, overall applications for SMAs have been limited because they require such low temperatures to undergo transformation.