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What is aluminium powder?
Aluminum powder (also known as silver powder) is a metallic pigment that’s silver in color. It is produced by adding powder to aluminum foil and crushing it into a scaly powder. Aluminum powder is light, buoyant, concealing, heat-reflective, and has high hiding power. After treatment it can become non-floating Aluminum Powder. Aluminum powder can identify fingerprints, and it can also be used in fireworks. Due to the wide variety of applications, its high demand, and its large range, aluminum powder is now a class metallic pigments.
What is the purpose of aluminum powder?
The particles of aluminum powder used in the pigments are scaly. The scaly particles are what give the aluminum powder its metallic colour and shielding effect. Metal aluminum powder is produced industrially since a very long time. Ramming was the early production method. The aluminum crumbs was placed in the groove of punching machine. The machine drove a ramming hammer to continuously punch aluminum crumbs into the groove. The ductile metal gradually turns into flakes that shatter under impact. The aluminum is then screened to remove the powder that is suitable for the product. The ramming technique has a low production efficiency, a difficult product to grasp and a large amount of dust which can easily catch fire or explode.
German Hamtag began producing aluminum powder using a mill in 1894. Steel balls, scrap aluminum and lubricants went into the ballmill, where the scrap aluminum was crushed by the steel balls. This resulted in a scaly, inert aluminum powder that filled the ballmill and pipeline. The method of “dry production” is still being used for gas. J. Hall in the United States developed the method of adding petroleum solvents to the ballmill to replace the inert air. The produced aluminum powder is then mixed with this solvent to create a thick slurry that can be used to make slurry aluminum paint. This method has been widely adopted because it is safe and easy to use. The “wet method” is the method used by most modern aluminum powders. Aluminum powder can also be used for the manufacture of fireworks and explosives. Certain types of electronic devices are also made from it. A lot of paints and sealing agents contain aluminum powder.
Is Aluminum Powder Dangerous?
Fine dust exposure may cause lung scarring (pulmonary fibrosis), which is accompanied with coughing and shortness in breath. Aluminum powder can be a flammable, solid substance that may pose a fire risk.
Powder coating has a lower risk of fire than regular paint. Comparing powder/air to solvent/air, the ignition energy is 50-100x higher. To be sure, any flammable powder, dust, or liquid will combine explosively with air to create a dangerous mixture. Transport, storage, and processing are all safe if the appropriate measures are taken beforehand. To ensure safety, the powder concentrations for the various powders listed above must not exceed 10g/m3. In the spray zone, this concentration often exceeds 10g/m3. There is always sufficient oxygen in the air, so it is essential to avoid sparks with more energy.
Comparing resin powders without pigments, the dust constant (a measure of explosive force) and maximum pressure explosion increase by 10% when aluminum powder is included at 5-6%. As the amount of aluminum powder increases, so will the explosive power. Aluminum powder with a content greater than 25 percent will have the same explosive power as pure metal powder. Nevertheless, this dependency on aluminum powder pigments doesn’t contribute to the lowest initial combustion energy. Pure resin powder will not reach the initiation energies, no matter what dispersion technique is used. Aluminum powder with a pigment content >10%, fine particles and uncoated aluminium powder can reduce the ignition energy.
Aluminum-containing powder coated coatings are identical to pigmented powdered coatings. Fire or explosion is not a problem as long they don’t exceed the specified limit.
Aluminum powder must not be separated, accumulated or concentrated in the factory to ensure safety. These requirements are also applicable to solvent-based paints containing gold and copper powder. The explosion risk directly caused by the copper-zinc powder alloy is lower than that of aluminum.
Aluminium powder characteristics
The aluminum powder suitable for the pigment is the one whose particles have the shape of scales. Its surface has been treated and it is suitable for using as a pigment. Aluminum powder paste consists of pigment aluminum and solvent. Aluminum powder is used and has similar characteristics. The output and dosage is larger because it’s easy to use. Comparing to other pigments, the aluminum powder for paints has more features in these aspects:
1. Scaly coverings have certain characteristics.
The particles of aluminum powder are scaly and have a diameter-to-thickness ratio between (40:1) –(100:1). Aluminum powder dispersed on the carrier has the characteristic of being perpendicular to the substrate. Numerous aluminum particles are connected. The particles are filled together to form a continuous metallic film that covers the surface and reflects light from outside. The uniqueness of aluminum powder lies in its ability to hide. The surface area of the aluminum powder is a function of the diameter-to-thickness ratio. Aluminum is stretched during the grinding process, the diameter-to-thickness ratio continues to increase, and the hiding power also increases.
2. Shielding properties of aluminum powder
The aluminum dispersed in carrier film floats and, as a result, it always forms a parallel layer of aluminum powder on the substrate. These layers are arranged in multiple parallel layers within the carrier. The spacing between the layers of aluminum powder prevents the capillary pores in the carrier film from allowing moisture or gas to pass through. Aluminum powder has a high level of physical protection.
3. Aluminium powder has a wide range of optical properties
Aluminum powder with high metallic luster and light color. Its smooth surface can reflect between 60%-90% the visible light, UV light and infrared. The surface of the object is bright silvery due to paint that contains aluminum powder. This is a characteristic of aluminum dust reflecting light.
4. Aluminum powder can produce a two-color effect
Aluminum powder exhibits a metallic luster, and is parallel to the coated item. The gloss and color depth change depending on the incident angle and viewing angles of the incident light in the carrier that contains transparent pigments. The “two color effect” is the name of this characteristic. The aluminum powder in the coating is arranged differently in the film. When light strikes each layer of aluminum flake, the film thickness is affected by the light differently. Also, the brightness of the reflected light varies. As light enters a film that contains transparent pigments, it passes through the particles of pigment to become colored and is then reflected by various levels of aluminum. This results in changes of color tone and metal light. This property of aluminum powder is used widely in coatings such as hammer-paint or metallic paint.
5. Aluminium powder with floating properties
Floating type aluminum powder or aluminum paste is large and is used for pigments. This type is distinguished by its scaly appearance on the surface.
This 3D printed electric motorcycle is fully functional and made with aluminum powder
Airbus has entered the 3D motorcycle market. Light Rider, a 3D-printed electric bicycle, is the future for electric cars and 3D printed vehicles.
This 3D bike was launched by APWorks, a subsidiary of Airbus, and was described by them as “corrosion-resistant, combined with lightweight aluminum and almost specific strength titanium.” Scalmalloy – a special alloy for APWorks – is responsible for these qualities. Aluminum powder developed by researchers.
How do you print something so strong as a bicycle using powder? Airbus has explained that Light Rider is made of thousands thin layers with a thickness of 60 microns. Hollow frame adds to the appeal of this 3D printed electric bike. Comparing to other bicycles the frame weight has been reduced by 30%. Joachim Zettler – CEO Airbus APWorks GmbH – explained that this bicycle cannot be made using traditional milling or welding techniques. The team decided on a hollow, branched structure. So, now each Light Rider 3D printed weighs less than 35kg.
Light Rider may seem like a toy but it is incredibly practical. The top speed of the Light Rider is 49m/h, despite not being Harley. The company’s aim is to use 3D Printed electric bicycles mostly for urban driving. Airbus claims the battery of its electric vehicle can travel 37 miles after each charge.
(aka. Technology Co. Ltd., a trusted global chemical supplier and manufacturer with more than 12 years of experience in providing high-quality Nanomaterials and chemicals. Currently, we have developed a number of materials. Aluminum powder produced by us is high-purity, has fine particles and contains low impurities. Send us an e-mail or click the desired products to
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