GKN Additive is preparing to produce and warehouse its gas and water atomised metal powders for Additive Manufacturing locally for supply to the European market through its GKN Additive Materials business segment. The company reports that it has identified a high demand for in-stock AM materials in Europe, finding that customers often cannot forecast prototyping projects enough to allow for a four to six-week lead time, typically working off one-week powder requests.
GKN Additive Materials is now warehousing standard AM powders such as 316L, 17-4PH and 20MnCr5 at its facility in Hueckeswagen, Germany. In addition to gas and water atomised powders, custom materials developed specifically for customers will be stored to allow the company to ship powders as needed.
GKN Additive and GKN Hoeganaes, a leader in the production of high-volume powders for Powder Metallurgy (PM) and specialised AM powders, merged their expertise to form GKN Additive Materials in Q1/2019. GKN Hoeganaes produces over 300,000 tons of engineered metal powders per year from facilities in Gallatin, Tennessee, USA, Bazhou, China, and Buzau, Romania for the PM industry.
The first trial production runs of water atomised AM powders at its high-volume Buzau facility to support industry growth have now been completed. Alloys produced during these trials include ANCOR AM 4600 and ANCOR AM DP600, both low-alloy steels used in automotive and structural applications.
These materials are currently under evaluation by research groups in Europe such as SUPREME, IDAM and several customers in North America. Material is also available for development activities for Laser Powder Bed Fusion (L-PBF) and Directed Energy Deposition (DED) applications.
GKN Additive Materials’ stated goal is to supply various grades of AM materials to customers in Europe in a timely manner, while focusing on water atomised low alloy steels powders to help its customers grow the market for AM parts. GKN Additive will be exhibiting at Formnext in Frankfurt, Germany, from November 19-22.