Powder Metallurgy Processing for Innovative Materials
Powder metallurgy processing is a useful approach for producing a wide range of both developmental and commercial materials. Some materials including tungsten carbide/Co cutting tools, high-performance aluminum composites for aerospace applications, and mechanically alloyed nickel-base super alloys cannot be readily produced using any other technique. Powder processing is also useful for producing small lots of new materials, since existing, commercial powders can often be blended together to produce the desired composition, avoiding the costs and facilities required for custom melting. Powder metallurgy is also capable of producing a wide range of product forms, ranging from billets to preforms to near-net-shape parts.
The Particulate and Composite Processing group at the Institute of Materials Processing at Michigan Technological University is well-prepared to produce and process powder-based materials in lot sizes ranging from about 10 g up to 10 kg. The Institute has capabilities for processing and characterizing a wide range of powder-based materials, including facilities for melt spinning, blending, cold pressing, vacuum and over-pressure sintering, and chemical analysis.
Areas of special expertise include:
Materials that the Institute has worked with include nickel-base super-alloys, ferrous alloys, metal matrix composites, intermetallics and ceramics.
- Oxide Dispersion Strengthened (ODS) Nickel, Aluminum and Iron Alloys
- Powder Metallurgy (P/M) Aluminum and Aluminum Metal Matrix Composites (MMC's), and
- Air-Sensitive and Specialty Particulate Materials, including powders containing reactive metals such as calcium, barium and rare earths.