Powder Production Line

Powder Production Line

Powder Production Line

Powder Production Line is an efficient way of producing metal parts that are hard to form using traditional melting and forming. Parts made from powder metallurgy have long life spans and require less maintenance.

Providing self-regulating intelligent machinery with real-time observation, detection and inference of identified process quality factors is an essential task for ensuring that powder production processes meet specific quality standards.

Preparation

The building blocks of matter have driven the imagination of philosophers, scientists and artists for millennia. For manufacturers, these elements have a very concrete existence in the form of powders. Powder processing technology conditions these bulk solids to transform them into a wide range of products. The process typically involves crushing the raw material into flakes, chips or granules to expose the underlying constituents, and separating out undesired materials using separation technology like magnetic separators for metals and froth flotation for hydrophobics.

The type of powder produced dictates the properties of the resulting metal components. Non-ferrous metal powders are generally made through a chemical treatment that includes oxide reduction, precipitation from solutions and thermal decomposition. Each method produces a unique powder shape, particle size distribution and other characteristics.

A metal parts manufacturer will purchase the powder it needs based on design specifications. The manufacturer then combines this powder with additives and lubricants based on performance criteria. The mixture is then Powder Production Line fed to a powder atomizing machine. The atomising process typically uses high velocity water flow, but the rotary electrode and sphering methods also produce good quality powders.

In comparison to casting, forging or machining production routes, powder metallurgy has an advantage in that it requires no liquids and produces few waste products. Almost 97% of the material that enters the process becomes part of the finished component.

Mixing and Blending

Mixing and blending operations are critical for powder processing to ensure that materials are prepared for further manufacturing activities like compaction granulation. Insufficient blending leads to inconsistent powder composition and reduced product quality.

Depending on the specific powders used, there are a variety of mixer designs that can be implemented to achieve proper mixing and blending. PPS selects and integrates the best mixer design for your powder processing needs. This includes analyzing the timeline for delivery of ingredients to the mixer, the discharge of the powder blend, and the level of accuracy required for your product. Additionally, PPS evaluates the equipment to determine how much heat can be generated, how fast it can mix, and whether sanitation standards can be upheld before, during, and after mixing and blending takes place.

PPS can deliver mixing and blending systems in either batch- or continuous-feed modes. We can also accommodate a variety of mixer sizes and configurations for varying batch sizes and filling levels.

For dry chemical blending applications, our team can implement specialized mixers that allow the powder to be introduced directly from its storage container into a liquid without air or in a vacuum via custom blending apparatus. This allows for complete blending and wetting of the powders in a very short time frame, while minimizing dust formation and preventing contamination and outgassing.

Sintering

Sintering operations involve the compacting of powdered material into a solid mass. This process is distinct from traditional melting processes because it does not reach the material’s melting point but instead uses diffusion to promote bonding and densification. This allows for the use of a wide range of materials that can be hard, soft, or brittle and provides a versatile manufacturing option.

The sintering process involves several stages including compaction, heating, and cooling. During compaction, pressure is applied to promote particle rearrangement and eliminate voids. The temperature is carefully regulated to facilitate particle bonding without reaching the melting point. This process is also known as hot pressing and can be used for shaped products.

There are two main types of sintering: solid-state and liquid-phase sintering. Solid-state sintering is used for metals such as titanium, zirconia and tungsten carbide. Liquid-phase sintering is a variation of this process that is used for ceramics such as silicon nitride and silicon carbide.

During this process, the powdered materials are compacted under high heat using a furnace or hot isostatic press. This process enables the production of intricate and durable parts filling machinery in a number of different industries. This is because sintering allows for a more precise control of the composition and the overall quality of the product, enabling the creation of a wide variety of components with unique characteristics.

Cooling

Powder metallurgy is the technology – in fact, some would say art – of producing metallic materials and components via powders rather than the conventional ingot metallurgy route. The powder route enables the production of near-net-shape components, which are typically lighter and more accurate in their dimensions than equivalent parts made through the traditional casting, forging or machining process.

Moreover, the PM route allows for the production of materials and products that cannot be obtained by the classical ingot metallurgy method, either because they have a different microstructure (e.g. WC-Co hardmetal) or because of the particular properties required (e.g. high magnetic flux density).

Cooling operations are required to bring the temperature of the molten metal down rapidly. The cooling system can take the form of a free-fall or close-coupled atomisation process, depending on the design of the pouring nozzle and atomising head. In the latter case, impingement of the gas jets and molten stream happens immediately below the atomising nozzle with little or no free-fall height, and it is therefore often referred to as confined or closed-coupled atomisation.

Several types of coolant can be used to achieve rapid product cooling, including water and air. For example, in a typical air-cooled system, the hot powder is blown by an air ring with a mixture of air and water to reduce the powder temperature to a point where it can be handled safely. This can be an effective way to boost production speed, and to improve the quality of the final product.

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