Research engineers at Rio Tinto Metal Powders, Canada, and Metalsinter S.r.l, Italy, have been working closely to optimise the compaction stage of the Powder Metallurgy process. In order to increase productivity in component production, the use of a high-performance premix has been reported as a method to increase compaction speed, whilst maintaining excellent surface finishes.
Powder mixes are a complex combination of several key ingredients each of which is required by the PM process. These ingredients include, beyond the base material, powdered additives such as graphite, copper, machining enhancers and lubricants. For a high-performance premix, each ingredient must be selected to enable the production of parts which are the most consistent in weight and size, which sinter cleanly and which can also be used at higher compaction speeds.
In an exclusive article for the Spring 2018 edition of Powder Metallurgy Review (Vol. 7 No.1), Rio Tinto’s Vincent Paris reported on the work being carried out at Rio Tinto and Metalsinter S.r.l, and investigated the selection of lubricants used in high-performance powder mixes.
In his study, Paris investigated the use of three sample powder mixes to compact a water pump pulley manufactured by Metalsinter, each containing high-performance lubricants. The compaction of this part using the three powder mixes was compared to the regular production premix used at Metalsinter for the same part. The objective of the study was to demonstrate how a high-performance premix can increase production rates while maintaining output quality.
This 11-page report is now available to read online, for free and in-full in PM Review. The magazine can be read in our online viewer (below), or downloaded in full in pdf format for reading offline on your PC, tablet or mobile device.
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