The winners in the 2017 Powder Metallurgy Design Excellence Awards competition, sponsored by the Metal Powder Industries Federation, were announced during POWDERMET2017 International Conference on Powder Metallurgy and Particulate Materials, Las Vegas, USA, June 13-16, 2017.
The winners, stated the MPIF, demonstrate outstanding examples of PM’s diversity. These component fabricators use PM’s flexibility to push forward new concepts and process controls and demonstrate the capabilities PM can offer in the service of component design. Designers continue to choose PM for critical applications such as auto engines and transmissions, medical devices, consumer products, military applications, and more.
Eight Grand Prizes and ten Awards of Distinction have been given in this year’s competition.
Automotive-Transmission: GKN Sinter Metals
The Grand Prize in the Automotive-Transmission Category was awarded to GKN Sinter Metals, Auburn Hills, Michigan, for a planetary carrier assembly made for Ford Motor Company. The sinter-brazed copper-steel assembly, comprised of a cage and a flanged hub, goes into the all-new 10-speed transmission for the Ford F-150 pickup.
The finished carrier assembly requires only simple milling and turning operations to hold the tight tolerances on the bearing bores, pinion pin shaft holes, and thrust faces.
Grand Prize in the Automotive-Engine: Phillips-Medisize
The Grand Prize in the Automotive-Engine Category went to Phillips-Medisize, Menomonie, Wisconsin, for a four-slot fuel valve seat made for Delphi. The Metal Injection Molded (MIM) part goes into the Multec3.5 compressed natural gas (CNG) fuel injector that satisfies the market’s need for a low-cost, low-pressure port fuel injector. It is currently used by several small-engine and automotive applications, including aftermarket CNG conversions for trucks and cars, helping contribute to a reduction in greenhouse-gas emissions.
Automotive-Chassis: GKN Sinter Metals
The Grand Prize in the Automotive-Chassis Category was won by GKN Sinter Metals, Auburn Hills, Michigan, for a copper-steel output pulley made for Nidec Automotive Motor Americas. The part goes into an electric reclining mechanism in a minivan-rear-seat application. The part offers a high level of functionality in the small-footprint mechanism and includes the groove for cable retention, the cam for radial movement, and stops at both ends.
Aerospace/Military: Dynacast Portland
The Grand Prize in the Aerospace/Military Category was won by Dynacast Portland, Wilsonville, Oregon, for a MIM 17-4 PH canard made for UTC Aerospace Systems and Raytheon Company. The stainless steel part is used on the Talon, an add-on guidance and control package that transforms a legacy 2.75-inch Hydra-70 unguided rocket into a low-cost, precision-guided weapon. Three canards on each Talon act as the primary flight control surfaces. The MIM canard underwent a stringent qualification process.
Hand Tools/Recreation: FMS Corporation
The Grand Prize in the Hand Tools/Recreation Category went to FMS Corporation, Minneapolis, Minnesota, for a 30-tooth drive sprocket fabricated from sinter-hardened steel with a proprietary machining additive, made for Polaris Industries, Inc. The part goes into a motorcycle where it is driven by the output shaft of the transmission and in turn drives the rear wheel via a toothed pulley. Other than tapping, the part is formed completely net shape, which offered cost savings over the previously machined part.
Hardware/Appliance: Indo-MIM Pvt. Ltd
The Grand Prize in the Hardware / Appliance Category was awarded to Indo-MIM Pvt. Ltd, India, for three MIM parts—upper stop ring, stop ring, and stop sleeve—made for Grohe, Germany. The parts go into the valve of a bath shower temperature controller unit. Made of MIM-316L stainless steel, all three complex parts are fabricated close to net shape, and special ceramic setters are employed for enhanced shape retention during sintering.
Medical/Dental: ARC Group Worldwide
The Grand Prize in the Medical/Dental Category went to ARC Group Worldwide, Longmont, Colorado, for a MIM surgical keel punch made for Paragon Medical. The part functions as a broach to remove bone during knee surgery. Made from MIM 17-4 PH stainless steel, the part is moulded and sintered to net shape with no additional coining, machining, or other post-processing to alter its shape.
Industrial Motors/Controls & Hydraulics: FMS Corporation
The Grand Prize in the Industrial Motors/Controls & Hydraulics Category was won by FMS Corporation, Minneapolis, Minnesota, for a stainless steel fitting. The fitting provides a latching mechanism to easily move a safety pin on a hydraulic lever up and out of the way. An innovative ramp design acts as a cam surface to move the pin from one position to the other.