The Basics of a Powder Production Line

The Basics of a Powder Production Line

Powder production lines utilize a range of methods to create metal parts. These processes vary depending on the desired outcome, but all require specialized equipment.

This includes atomizing technology that converts molten metal into fine particles. Using an inert gas atomising process, this allows for rapid solidification with a spherical particle shape.

Feeding System

Powder feeding is an important part of a powder production line, and Coperion K-Tron offers a wide variety of solutions. For example, the Twin 150 multi-process powder feeder can be operated in Full Remote mode and connected to an external control system via UDP/IP or PROFIBUS protocols. This allows the feeder to be controlled by a robot or process controller, increasing the degree of automation and eliminating manual operations.

This feeding central system continuously, uniformly and quantificationally feeds the powder to the spraying equipment in the automatic powder coating line. It reduces application error and makes color changes faster, while keeping the powder guns, powder hoses and injectors clean during operation.

This nutritional powder processing line uses rice, bean and corn as raw materials to produce all kinds of nutrition powder. The dry ingredients are combined in a tumbling or ribbon blender, then the mixture is dried with hot air. The resulting nutritional powder is light in weight, has low water content and is easy to carry.

Conveying System

A conveyor is an integral part of any powder production line. It is designed to transport bulk powder from the starting point to the destination in an enclosed pipe, avoiding any potential hazards along the way. A vacuum conveying system is one of the best options for transporting powders. It offers a number of benefits, including dust control and preventing combustible dusts from becoming airborne. It also ensures that any leaks occur inward, unlike positive-pressure systems which tend to leak outward.

The system requires a pickup point, a power/vacuum source, a vacuum receiver (also known as a filter receiver), and a Powder Production Line control panel. It then gently conveys the powdered material through a tubing line of conveyance, and it delivers it to a receiver vessel where it is discharged from. Before buying a pneumatic conveyor, it’s important to establish the distance that the powder will travel and its desired conveying rate. This will allow the manufacturer to customize the system to meet the needs of the plant.

Mixing System

Mixing systems are critical for a variety of powder processing applications, but they must be carefully selected and integrated to ensure low powder degradation and uniformity. Powders poured directly into liquids often agglomerate — clump together — and can stick to the wet surfaces of equipment, increasing production downtime and the risk of contamination.

To solve these problems, processors need a high-performance mixing technology that can wet out and disperse powdery ingredients rapidly into liquids. One such solution is the Silverson Flashblend, a highly effective mixer for combining dry powders into liquids at higher production rates than traditional techniques can.

While batch mixers are typically a better choice for large facilities with the capacity to handle multiple batches at once, continuous mixers also offer advantages. Contract processors also prefer mixers that offer flexibility in terms of agitation style, as their mixing requirements can vary from project to project.

Sintering System

Powder metals can be molded and compacted into the shape of the final part. The amount of pressure that is used for this compaction will affect the porosity of the resulting piece. The lower the pressure, the less porosity there will be.

The sintering process is the next step of powder metallurgy. During this step, the green compact (the result of powder compaction) is sintered. This is a process that involves burning off additives like lubricants and deflocculates.

The sintering process also eliminates any open porosity that was created during powder compaction. This process is a great way to create complex parts with intricate geometry and high thickness. In addition, this is an eco-friendly production method because every single powder particle that enters the sintering process ends up being a part of the finished product. This is unlike traditional manufacturing methods, which typically produce scrap.

Sizing System

Metal injection molding is a manufacturing technique that makes a wide variety of PM parts. Iron powder is mixed with additives and a wax lubricant, then injected into a die that is a close match to the desired part shape. This forms a green part that is about 65% solid. The part is then heated to remove the binders and sinter to complete the process.

This is one of the oldest PM methods, and it still produces a large number of structural parts today. The basic metallurgical principles remain the same, but advances in powder technology have dramatically reduced production time and cost.

This is a dry granulation process, so there is less filling machinery chance of contamination and no need for entrapment areas that might damage the ingredients. It’s also easy to validate and optimize using a recipe driven HMI, allowing a more thorough Lean manufacturing workflow.

Finishing System

In the powder coating line, products move through a series of processes that include preparation, coating and curing. They typically use conveyor systems to transport the product to each process.

Often, the metal product is stripped prior to moving into the powder coat process. This involves sandblasting for rust and debris removal, degreasing, chemical etching for improved adherence and phosphatizing to prevent corrosion. An automated preparation program can also be used in place of a manual process to achieve the same results.

Powder coating lines can run on a batch basis, in which case each product is manually moved from one stage to another, or they can be fully automated with an IntelliFinishing system that uses a unique conveyor and smart controls to enable scalability, flexible processes and intelligent workflows. Parts can be indexed (slowed down), stopped, reversed or oscillated as needed to achieve quality results without slowing production down.

Previous post Vacuum Emulsifying Mixer
Next post Vacuum Emulsifying Mixer