PyroGenesis Canada, Inc., Montreal, Québec, Canada, has issued an update on its metal powder for Additive Manufacturing business, emphasising its focus on advancing its production to an industrial scale as well as adding aluminium to its range of metal powders.
“Over the past three years, PyroGenesis completed a series of intricate production steps as it readied the NexGen Plasma Atomisation system,” stated P Peter Pascali, CEO and chair of PyroGenesis. “This has resulted in the most recent milestone, where the company announced that it had moved from sample production to commercial size batch production. With the ability to now produce titanium powder by the tonne, the company is now in a position where it can provide additional perspective on status, and next steps, for both existing and developing opportunities.”
The company intends to add aluminium alloy powder to its portfolio, which comes as a result of being approached repeatedly by global automakers who have requested aluminium alloy powders made with plasma atomisation – specifically from the alloy AlSi10Mg. PyroGenesis states that this is a medium-term goal for the company and will require an additional stand-alone production system to prevent cross-contamination, allow for individualised research and development, and facilitate the large scale and volume of production that is anticipated as a result of previous requests.
PyroGenesis recently filed a provisional patent for its atomised metal powder production process (NexGen Plasma Atomization), for use in AM. This process is said to have been a significant departure from conventional plasma atomisation. The provisional patent targets higher production rates, narrower particle size distribution (PSD), and has the advantage of being able to shift the bulk PSD into a more desirable distribution. These advantages enable the company to produce for the AM, a targeted powder, with little to no waste, at higher volumes and lower cost.
PyroGenesis has also announced that in addition to being ISO 9001:2008 and AS9100D certified, it also intends to pursue ISO 13485:2016 certification. ISO 13485:2016 specifies requirements for a quality management system where an organisation needs to demonstrate its ability to provide medical devices and related services that consistently meet customer and applicable regulatory requirements. Once obtained, the company’s market is expected to expand to include medical device makers.
The company is also hoping to build and operate a metal powder manufacturing facility in Europe in anticipation of the expected growth there. PyroGenesis states that it currently examining cost-positive geographies, fleshing out preliminary infrastructure development plans, and exploring various avenues and potential approaches.
Massimo Dattilo, VP, PyroGenesis Additive, commented, “As we have stated in the past, given the sheer size of this market and our unique manufacturing process – which improves exponentially on the world’s existing leading metal powder production process (which we invented twenty-five years ago) – we expect to capture a significant share of the overall titanium powder market.”
“With our NexGen system reaching the commercial scale production milestones of the past month, combined with the attention that these achievements have attracted worldwide, we are even more convinced that not only has the company’s systematic and painstaking approach been the correct path, but that this strategy will result in unique additional opportunities,” he continued. “As a result, we are continuing to announce new products, new markets, and additional manufacturing avenues as indicated above, all with the goal to help additive manufacturers improve their processes & margins, by offering the highest quality metal powders at the lowest cost.”