The latest issue of Powder Injection Moulding International has just been published by Inovar Communications Ltd. The 80 page June 2013 edition contains extensive industry news, features and technical papers focussed on metal, ceramic and carbide injection moulding technology.
As well as 30 pages of PIM industry news the June 2013 edition includes the following articles and reports:
MIM soft magnetic materials: Processing, properties and applications
Metal Injection Moulding has long been recognised as an effective route for the manufacture of soft magnetic components. In addition to the advantages that net shape manufacturing brings for materials that can be both expensive and difficult to machine, MIM processing also offers improved magnetic properties and a greater freedom in materials selection. Dr David Whittaker reviews the processing, properties and applications for a group of materials that is attracting increasing interest from end-user industries.
Megamet Solid Metals: Expansion and diversification at one of North America’s fastest growing MIM firms
The US Metal Injection Moulding industry continues to enjoy exceptional levels of growth thanks to strong demand from the region’s two largest consumers of MIM parts, the firearms and medical device sectors. Megamet Solid Metals Inc. is one of the fastest growing North American MIM companies, with its success to-date achieved on the back of a strong relationship with the firearms industry.
PIM International visited the company and reports on a steadily expanding operation that has its sights set on creating above-average growth through diversification into new markets.
Elnik Systems: The next generation takes the helm at a leading innovator in batch furnace technology for MIM
Elnik Systems is widely recognised as a market leader in the production of batch debind and sintering furnaces for MIM, with the company’s MIM 3000 system operating for nearly 20 years at the heart of MIM production facilities worldwide. As Stefan Joens succeeds his father Claus in the day to day running of the business, we profile the company and shares its management team’s insights into the MIM business.
PIM at the Hannover Fair 2013: Producers promote PIM technology to a global audience
Powder Injection Moulding may produce only a tiny fraction of the total demand for industrial components, but in recent years the number of PIM companies exhibiting at Germany’s Hannover Fair has been steadily growing. Bernard Williams toured the three exhibition halls focusing on “Industrial Supply” for PIM International and reports on what MIM and CIM producers had on offer.
Technical papers included in this issue:
Effects of powder size and chemistry on densification and properties of 316L MIM parts made under different sintering atmospheres
A Coleman, K Murray, M Kearns, T Tingskog, B Sanford, E Gonzalez & M Agyeman
316L stainless steel is one of the most popular alloys used in Metal Injection Moulding (MIM) today. It exhibits high corrosion resistance, ductility and good polishing characteristics but has lower strength and hardness than heat treatable stainless steels such as 17-4 PH, 420 and 440C. It tends to be used therefore in applications where an attractive surface finish is required, such as consumer products like wrist watches and where superior corrosion properties are essential, for example medical instruments and dental components. Here, the high sintered density achievable with 316L enables high standards of hygiene by minimising surface porosity where contaminants could otherwise accumulate. In this study we set out to examine a number of aspects of materials and process parameters on the properties of 316L.
Our study examines prealloy powders with high and low Ni levels within the broad 316L specification and a range of particle sizes ranging from 90% – 10 μm to 80% – 22 μm. A 316L variant made using a master alloy route is also evaluated alongside the prealloys in different sintering atmospheres: vacuum, nitrogen, hydrogen and cracked ammonia. Results are discussed in terms of prevailing sintering mechanisms.
MIM components with hollow-sphere additions: production, properties and market potential
J Weise, J Baumeister, F Petzoldt
Additions of hollow glass or ceramic micro spheres can be used to reduce the density of metal injection moulded components to almost half of the density of the corresponding compact alloy. Feasibility of the technology has been demonstrated for alloys like Fe99.7, FeCu3, FeNi36 or 316L. The resulting composites exhibit high specific stiffness, very good vibration damping, high capability of crash energy absorption and the possibility of adapting the Young’s modulus.
Examples of potential MIM components containing hollow micro sphere additions are acoustic components, crash elements for high energy loads and light-weight parts. Furthermore, hollow sphere additions can be used to substitute expensive metal powders. The presented paper describes the production process, provides an overview of mechanical properties and discusses potential market benefits.