Health and Safety – Metal Powder AM
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Health and Safety – Metal Powder AM


CRP year




Project Reference No.


Technical Lead

Chris Ryall

AM process & materials used

Primarily powder bed fusion (laser and electron beam)



Powder safety within metal additive manufacturing has been highlighted as an area of concern among a number of users within the production environment. There are many aspects of metal powder handling within the AM process that could pose a health and safety risk. These aspects include both exposure to powder through handling and recycling processes, as well as the risk of explosion through the formation of dust clouds and ignition sources. Due to the technology being relatively new, the risks associated with AM are not fully defined within this environment; and this has an impact on the information available on how exposure and safety controls are selected.

This CRP project:

  • Reviewed current legislation relating to metal powders across a range of industries, and best practice across a range of users with respect to AM processes.
  • Investigated explosion properties of powder and condensate for powder bed fusion (both laser and electron beam) and blown powder directed energy deposition systems.
  • Created an AM health and safety toolkit covering: powder classification, particle size, powder handling, use of PPE, managing facilities and controls, and AM machines themselves.



If you are a member you can access the deliverables of this project here.