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As I understand it (and I am not an expert I just enjoy the field) sintered materials retain some degree of porosity (and loose some strength due to this and how the particles are adhered).

This is OK for the average power drill in your house. It isn't critical, and they can compensate for the porosity with extra materials.

If we were replacing a steel part with at TI one, then sintering might make sense, the extra strength, and lowered weight would compensate for the differences in materials.




SpaceX is using laser sintering (generally Inconel) for a wide range of components, including pieces of the engines that flew today.

They make extensive use of laser sintering in the SuperDraco engine (including the combustion chamber, which experiences tremendously high temperatures and pressures).

That being said, laser sintering is great for parts with weird geometries and structures that are hard to machine. A grid fin is really straightforward from a milling perspective, and would take advantage of the strengths of laser sintering.




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