From nuclear physicist to research on additive manufacturing

Meet Dmitriy Khrapov from Tomsk Polytechnic University, Russia, with a master degree as a nuclear physicist who then changed field of interest to do his PhD in additive manufacturing of materials, specifically metals.

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We took a quick chat with Dmitriy in the additive manufacturing lab while he was in the process of developing new materials.

What kind of research do you do during your stay at Sports Tech Research Centre?

We make samples from new alloys using EBM, Electron Beam Melting technology, developed for biomedical implants for humans. Industrial EBM technology has some standard alloys but we are trying new ones including titanium, niobium, zirconium and tantalum, metals that are biocompatible and minimize possible biological effects that may result from the implant use. We already know that these metals are biocompatible, but there are still questions about their using in additive manufacturing.

How has it gone so far?

The news is that we used EBM as method to produce titanium-niobium and titanium-niobium-zirconium-tantalum alloys, only some of these previously only been tested using laser-based additive methods. Next step is material characterization of different samples manufactured with different process settings and investigating microstructure and properties of these materials.

The research is done jointly by multiple groups from different countries including researchers from the two partner universities. Dr. Andrey Koptioug at Sports Tech Research Centre is supervising the visit and research on the Swedish side. 

*EBM, Electron Beam Melting, is an additive manufacturing (AM) technology.