The Wittmann Group, which in 2018 celebrated the 10th anniversary of the integration of Battenfeld Kunststofftechnik with Wittmann, based in Kottingbrun, Austria, to provide a range of injection moulding machines for plastic and Powder Injection Moulding, recently included a profile of Italian MIM producer Mimest SpA in its Innovations newsletter (3/18). Mimest was established in Trento in 2005 by four engineers specialising in metallurgy, plastics engineering, mechanics, and design, with Matteo Perina acting as Managing Director and Rudj Bardini as Technical Director.
Perina stated that in the beginning the company invested in knowledge about the MIM production process, and also the development of special equipment, for example for the optimisation of powder mixing. Injection moulding machines were purchased along with debinding and sintering furnaces. Today, Mimest produces more than a million parts a year from a range of materials, with part weights ranging from a few grams to 300 g. Mimest’s equipment includes Wittmann Battenfeld EcoPower 55 injection moulding machines equipped with a special CIM/MIM package.
Bardini stated that the all-electric machine guarantees the highest degree of repeatability, as well as possible energy savings in Powder Injection Moulding. In addition, the sensitivity of the electric machine’s clamping unit and ejector is said to help protect the relatively fragile green PIM parts. The removal of the green parts from the mould and separation of the parts from the sprues is carried out by a Wittmann R8.3 robot. Following primary solvent debinding to remove one of the polymer elements of the binder, secondary debinding and sintering is carried out in TAV vacuum furnaces.
New CEO at Wittmann Battenfeld
As of March this year, Rainer Weingraber has taken over the management of Wittmann Battenfeld in Kottingbrunn. He succeeds the company’s long-standing Managing Director and CEO, Georg Tinschert, who will retire at the end of March.