Atomising Systems Ltd has announced investment of over £2 million with a move to a 3,300 m2 facility and the addition of a new 750 kg water atomiser. The company, based in Sheffield, UK, has increased powder production capacity from around 300 t/year of gas atomised powder by adding the new water atomiser with a capacity of 20-30 t/week, equivalent to 1,000-1,500 t/year.
Atomising Systems Ltd (ASL) supplies a range of gas atomised powders, which include both copper- and nickel-based brazing powders, as well as special hard facing alloys based on nickel, cobalt and iron. Diamond tool matrix powders and master alloy powders for structural parts alloying are also produced.
The new nitrogen-purged water atomiser allows the production of a range of high quality alloys, both ferrous and non-ferrous. The fully commissioned plant is successfully making a wide range of stainless steels (for structural parts, plastic filling, and filters) and other iron-based alloys. Previously only a small 25 kg capacity water atomiser was available, used for the production of precious metal alloys and experimental batches of special alloys of many kinds.
The plant is provided with vacuum driers so tool and alloy steels can be produced with minimal corrosion and oxidation. In addition to the highly instrumented PLC-controlled atomiser with full water recycling system, a significant investment has been made in 1200 mm diameter production sieves with ultrasonic deblinding facilities. An 8m3 blender allows homogeneous batches of up to 22 tons to be shipped. A laboratory equipped with both sieve analysis and laser particle sizing allows on-site QC, complemented by an XRF analyser which is backed up by Sheffield’s local certified analytical laboratories.
Simon Dunkley, Managing Director of ASL, stated, “We have taken the decision to exploit our world-leading expertise to a greater degree through sales of special powder. We continue to service a record level of external contracts for major production facilities and to offer plants for most of the 40 or more industrial sectors for which we have developed technology. We have invested in increased staff levels and have six apprentices in training. A major new R&D project is also at an advanced stage of planning which should lead to further reductions in production costs for some special alloy powders.”
To complement the new investment, ASL has recruited Mark Wall as Sales Manager, Powder Division. He has 30 years experience of the production and sale of both water and gas atomised powders at a recently closed plant near Birmingham. He will be working with Dr Paul Rose on sales and supported by ASL’s Technical Department where Ing Dirk Aderhold recently succeeded Dr John Dunkley as Technical Director, John remaining actively involved in technical matters when needed.