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MEDPIMOLD Technology

The technology to produce ceramic or metallic parts by Medium Pressure Powder Injection Molding is straightforward and includes the following steps:
  • Powder pre-processing
  • Feedstock preparation
  • Medium pressure injection molding
  • Binder removal by thermal evaporation or supercritical CO2 extraction
  • Sintering
... in brief

A high-solid content mixture (feedstock) of ceramic or metal powder and a wax-based binder is melted and injected under pressure into a tempered one- or multi-cavity mold tool. The solidified molded part is then ejected from the tool, and the organic binder is removed thermally in a debinding furnace or, alternatively, by supercritical extraction. The remaining powder body is sintered (fired) in a furnace at high temperature to a dense, high- strength component. Typical linear shrinkage during sintering is 10-15 percent.
 
An automatic one-cavity mold tool for production of watch cases of stainless steel, zirconia as well as alumina. The production rate with this tool is four to five cases per minute.


Four stages during production of watch cases of stainless steel by medium pressure powder injection molding: 1. injection molded 2. cleaned 3. debound and 4. sintered

 

Powder injection molded watch cases and links of washed stainless steel and aluminium oxide (alumina)
Complex-shaped metal and ceramic parts formed by Medium Pressure Powder Injection Molding - MEDPIMOLD - are used in a number of industrial applications as well as in many consumer products. Our customers have selected it because of the desirable combination of low-cost, flexibility, and shape complexity. Up till now, parts of the following materials have successfully been manufactured:


Metals - MIM

  • Stainless 316 Steel
  • High-Speed Steel (HSS)
  • Low-Alloy Steel
  • Iron
  • Tungsten Carbide
  • Tungsten
  • Cobalt
  • Titanium
 


Ceramics - CIM

  • Alumina
  • Zirconia
  • Silicon Nitride
  • Silicon Carbide
  • PZT  (Piezo material)
  • Leucite
  • Steatite
  • Glass
With Goceram's feedstock preparation concept, well-adapted feedstocks with high-solid content are obtained. For instance, the solid content of stainless steel powder (grain size less than 16 micrometers) is 65 volume percent and of fine aluminium oxide powder (mean grain size of 1 micrometer) is 62 volume percent.

A relative comparison of different PIM technologies

  Type of injection molding technique MEDPIMOLD
  High pressure Low pressure Medium pressure
Investment cost high low medium
Molding tool cost high low low
Service cost medium low low
Automation capability good unknown good
Prototyping capability poor good good

Equipment and technologies

The GOCERAM production line includes:

  • Feedstock Mixers for rapid homogenisation of powder and binder
  • Medium Pressure Injection Molding (MPIM) Machines for cost-effective shaping of complex components using environment-friendly wax-based binder systems
  • Debinding Furnaces without or with weight loss rate control, documenting the removal of binders and other volatiles from green parts in various atmospheres
  • Supercritical CO2 Extraction Equipment facilitating high-speed production of thin- and thick-walled parts to very fine tolerances
  • Specially designed sintering furnaces
  • Automation equipment 

Experienced customers may purchase selected machinery only. For customers completely new to the technology, Goceram will be involved all the way from the first test run to the start up of the production at the client's manufacturing site.

Please contact us if you want us to carry out a test run of a specific material and component according to your wishes. We will do this as a technical service and share the cost between us. Such a run will help you to decide that MEDPIMOLD is the technique you should choose for the production of complex shaped parts of almost any material.

The trademark MEDPIMOLD® covers all the machinery and technology related to the Medium Pressure Powder Injection Molding technique.

 
     
Goceram AB Tel +46-(0)31-181103, +46-(0)705-181218
Svealiden 8 Fax +46-(0)31-181103
SE-431 39 Mölndal Email
Sweden