Prof. Dr. Winfried Josef Huppmann, a leading figure in the international Powder Metallurgy community for many decades, passed away in Eschen, Liechtenstein, on August 13, 2016. Born in Tulln in the state of Lower Austria in 1945, Huppmann was 71.
After receiving his doctorate in physics at the University of Vienna in 1970, Huppmann started his professional career in industrial PM research at Sherritt Gordon Mines Ltd in Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta, Canada. Here he became part of a team to successfully develop and patent a process to produce finely divided cobalt powder suitable for use in sintered carbides, as well as for magnetic products such as magnetic inks and tapes.
In 1973 Huppmann returned to Germany to become an academic researcher at the Research Centre for Powder Metallurgy at the Max Planck Institute for Metals Research in Stuttgart. Here he was involved in developing a basic understanding of the different stages of liquid phase sintering, and particularly the improvements in PM materials made by this sintering method.
In 1979 Huppmann moved into industrial research when he became Director of R&D at Sintermetallwerk Krebsöge GmbH (today GKN Sintermetals) in Radevormwald. During his time at the company many new products and processes were introduced into industrial practice.
Winfried Huppmann was a prominent member of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Metallkunde (German Society for Metal Science) becoming their Chairman in 2003, and was Vice Chairman of the German Ausschuß für Pulvermetallurgie.
In his work with the Ausschuß für Pulvermetallurgie, Huppmann was one of the key persons involved in organising the highly successful ‘1st International Powder Metallurgy Conference and Exhibition’ held in Düsseldorf in 1986. The event was organised on behalf of the European Powder Metallurgy Federation – a federation of national European based PM associations founded in 1986, which was modified to become the European Powder Metallurgy Association (EPMA) in 1989.
In 1987 Huppmann become Manager, Research and Innovation, as a Member of the Extended Board of Hilti AG in Liechtenstein, where he worked until his retirement in 2005. In 1990 he was presented with the Ivor Jenkins Medal by the Institute of Metals (UK) at the PM World Congress held in London, followed in 1991 by the Skaupy Award from the Ausschuß für Pulvermetallurgie in Germany. In 2008 he was honoured by the EPMA with the Distinguished Service Award.