Swedish heating technology company Kanthal, part of the Sandvik Group, and metals research institute Swerim, based in Luleå, Sweden, report that their ultra-modern atomising equipment designed for the production and development of metal powders is now operational following a previously announced joint investment of €2 million.
With a high degree of flexibility, the new equipment is specially designed for the research and development of both materials and the atomisation process for Additive Manufacturing and Powder Metallurgy applications. It is possible to atomise powder charges of up to 85 kg, suitable for AM, Metal Injection Moulding (MIM), surface coating and Hot Isostatic Pressing (HIP).
Swerim and Kanthal’s investment is said to be a result of the increased demand for research surrounding materials and process development within Additive Manufacturing and Powder Metallurgy sectors. The partnership will see a long-term collaboration, whereby Kanthal will gain access to Swerim’s expertise in Powder Metallurgy, Additive Manufacturing of metal products, advanced structural analysis, testing and modelling. Swerim will have the opportunity to build further on knowledge within these areas.
“This investment brings unique opportunities for customised development within Additive Manufacturing and it means that we can bring new materials to the market faster,” stated Dilip Chandrasekaren, Head of R&D at Kanthal. “Cooperation with Swerim also gives us the prerequisites for conducting world-class R&D within a strategic area for Kanthal and Sweden.”
Annika Strondl, manager of powder materials and Additive Manufacturing at Swerim, commented, “It’s fantastic that metals research institute Swerim and Kanthal are together investing 20 million kronor in a state-of-the-art atomiser unit. This has enabled a unique platform for R&D activities focussing on alloying and powder development for all of Sweden. The fact that we are investing together with the industry just goes to show that Swerim is an attractive research partner within powder and alloying development.”