Winners of the EPMA’s 2005 Excellence in Powder Metallurgy Awards. The winning entries highlighted the capabilities of powder metallurgy and demonstrated the continuing advancements in the PM industry.
Awards of merit
PM components category
OBE Ohnmacht and Baumgärtner GmbH of Ispringen, Germany, received an award in the PM components category for its metal injection moulded spring hinge used on Tag Heuer sunglasses.
The design concept for the MIM hinges was to produce parts which do not have the appearance of having been formed in a mould, i.e. without edges and corners. The edgeless hinge movement was designed as two disk-shaped forms that slide over each other. MIM was found to be the only technology capable of economic manufacture of the close tolerance parts which are finished by tapping, sand blasting, polishing and plating.
Advanced Materials Technologies Pte Ltd of Singapore received the EPMA’s International Award of Merit for its metal injection moulded rotary hinge (shaft and plate) used in clamshell mobile phones. The use of the rotary hinge is said to create more viewing angles in the clamshell phones with a 20° freedom of movement and an inbuilt digital camera.
PM components category
Highly commended in the PM component category was a soft magnetic iron-base stator ring produced by Ames SA, Barcelona, Spain. The stator ring is used in a heavy duty vehicle fuel injection system, and is produced to 7.4 g/cm3 density, 410 N/mm2 tensile strength and hardness of 79 HRB.
The stator overcame four important challenges in replacing the machined silicon iron stator previously used. It had to overcome the fixing over plastic moulding to the magnetic circuit, facilitate the assembly process by providing geometric references, improve the magnetic performance of the circuit, and finally reduce costs. The stators are sized, turned, brushed and magnetically annealed after sintering.
PM materials category
In the PM materials category Inco Europe Ltd, London, received an award for its new high temperature and corrosion resistant metallic foam – INCOFOAM ® High-Temp (Fig. Structures made of NiAl (left) and Ni-base superalloy powders).
The material properties of the new PM material can be tailored for applications such as filters (diesel soot filters in exhausts), catalyst supports, and also energy generation and energy conversion.
Also in this category, Höganäs AB of Sweden, was commended for its two grades of water atomised steel powders containing chromium and molybdenum. The prealloyed powders Astaloy CrM (3% Cr-0.5%Mo) and Astaloy CrL (1.5%Cr-0.2%Mo) were developed to optimise the performance of PM parts whilst reducing material costs and avoiding Ni and Cu alloying elements which are either difficult to recycle or hazardous to handle.
Highly commended in this category is the new Ancorsteel 4300 grade of low alloy steel powder produced by Advanced Materials Technologies Pte Ltd of Singapore. It has excellent strength, hardenability, fatigue and toughness, for high performance PM parts.