Japan’s PM industry has maintained the recovery momentum seen in the first half of 2012 into the 3rd quarter but with slowed levels of growth, reports the Japan Powder Metallurgy Association (JPMA).
The JPMA statistics for the first nine months of 2012 showed that iron powder shipments for powder metallurgy applications increased by 10.2% to 84,684 tonnes compared with the same period in 2011 which was heavily impacted by the after effects of the earthquake and tsunami.
However, this growth only brings PM grade iron powder shipments in Japan back to the pre-earthquake level of 2010. Copper powder shipments sank by 38.5% to 3730 tonnes in the period January-September 2012 compared with the same period in 2011
The JPMA also reported that the sales value of all PM products increased by 8.1% to Yen 99,485 billion ($1.215 billion)) in the first nine months of 2012. Of this total structural PM parts made up 84.6% of the total at Yen 84,157 billion ($1.027 billion) followed by PM bearings at 8.7%, and sintered friction materials and electrical materials making up the balance.