Quintus Technologies, Västerås, Sweden, reports that it has recently delivered a QIH 15L Hot Isostatic Press (HIP) to TAG Medical Products Corporation, Ltd, Ga’aton, Israel. The new press will be used to ensure that MIM implants and surgical tools produced at TAG Medical possess the maximum theoretical density, ductility and fatigue resistance required for use in the demanding medical sector.
“To increase production capacity, we invested in a new MIM (Metal Injection Moulding) production line,” stated Ran Weizman, Executive VP at TAG Medical. “The Quintus press will serve us for the implants and minimal cutting tools production, where high material uniformity and good mechanical properties are required.”
The QIH 15L Hot Isostatic Press features include High Pressure Heat Treatment™ (HPHT™) and Uniform Rapid Quenching (URQ®), enabling the press to produce finished MIM parts which meet the required density, ductility and fatigue requirements. Incorporating heat treatment and cooling in a single process, HPHT combines stress-relief annealing, HIP, high-temperature solution-annealing, high pressure gas quenching, and subsequent ageing or precipitation hardening in one integrated furnace cycle.
The consolidation of multiple steps in the HIP allows several functions to be performed in a single location, with fewer pieces of equipment on the production line. This was said to be a central consideration for TAG Medical in selecting this technology.
“All TAG manufacturing processes, from A to Z, are done under one roof. Therefore, it is important for us to work with equipment that gives us this option,” added Weizman.
With a new emphasis on disposable surgical instruments in TAG’s MIM production chain, faster throughput and higher workpiece quality are also essential. The QIH 15L’s URQ capability achieves an impressive cooling rate of >80K/s while minimising thermal distortion and non-uniform grain growth. The press’s furnace chamber has a diameter of 170 mm and a height of 290 mm and operates at a maximum pressure of 30,000 psi and a maximum temperature of 1,400°C.
“Quintus is the global leader in HIP technology,” noted Weizman. “We visited their factory a few years ago and were impressed with the company’s professional team, customer centre, and production lines. Accurate, well controlled, and user friendly – the Quintus press meets all the above requirements.”
Jan Söderström, CEO of Quintus Technologies, concluded, “Our presses are designed to enhance efficiency and lower per-unit processing costs while saving space, energy, and infrastructure. These are important benefits for companies like TAG Medical that are looking ahead to mass production of development-stage products and expansion of their OEM business. We are delighted to be working with TAG as it continues to develop solutions that improve quality of life, reduce costs, minimise surgery times, and save lives.”