Additive manufacturing (AM) is an advanced manufacturing process that provides the opportunity to build geometrically complex and highly individualized lightweight structures. Despite its many advantages, additively manufactured components suffer from poor surface quality. To locally improve the surface quality and homogenize the microstructure, friction stir processing (FSP) technique was applied on Al-Si12 components produced by selective laser melting (SLM) using two different working media. The effect of FSP on the microstructural evolution, mechanical properties, and corrosion resistance of SLM samples was investigated. Microstructural investigation showed a considerable grain refinement in the friction stirred area, which is due to the severe plastic deformation and dynamic recrystallization of the material in the stir zone. Micro-hardness measurements revealed that the micro-hardness values of samples treated using FSP are much lower compared to SLM components in the as-built condition. This reduction of hardness values in samples treated with FSP can be explained by the dissolution of the very fine Si-phase network, being characteristic for SLM samples, during FSP. Surface topography also demonstrated that the FSP results in the reduction of surface roughness and increases the homogeneity of the SLM microstructure. Decreased surface roughness and grain size refinement in combination with the dissolved Si-phase network of the FSP treated material result in considerable changes in corrosion behavior. This work addresses the corrosion properties of surface treated additive manufactured Al-Si12 by establishing adequate microstructure-property relationships. The corrosion behavior of SLM-manufactured Al-Si12 alloys is shown to be improved by FSP-modification of the surfaces.
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