As one of the powder bed fusion additive manufacturing technologies, electron beam melting (EBM) is gaining more and more attention due to its near-net-shape production capacity with low residual stress and good mechanical properties. These characteristics also allow EBM built parts to be used as produced without post-processing. However, the as-built rough surface introduces a detrimental influence on the mechanical properties of metallic alloys. Thereafter, understanding the effects of processing parameters on the part’s surface roughness, in turn, becomes critical. This paper has focused on varying the processing parameters of two types of contouring scanning strategies namely, multispot and non-multispot, in EBM. The results suggest that the beam current and speed function are the most significant processing parameters for non-multispot contouring scanning strategy. While for multispot contouring scanning strategy, the number of spots, spot time, and spot overlap have greater effects than focus offset and beam current. The improved surface roughness has been obtained in both contouring scanning strategies. Furthermore, non-multispot contouring scanning strategy gives a lower surface roughness value and poorer geometrical accuracy than the multispot counterpart under the optimized conditions. These findings could be used as a guideline for selecting the contouring type used for specific industrial parts that are built using EBM.
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