Principle of Powder Metallurgy
Powder technology is the science for the manufacture of parts from metal powders by compaction and heating that creates a homogeneous mass. Heating is executed in a furnace and is called sintering. The temperature at which sintering is performed is lower than the melting point of the powdered material. Sintering consists of diffusion in solid state by which particles of compacted powder are bonded together. This is the basic working principle of powder technology.
The powder metallurgy technique finds use in various industries and manufacturing processes. It has become very popular in a very short span of time because of its efficiency, durability and reliable output. Some of them are mentioned here.
Applications of Powder Metallurgy in Industries
The powder metallurgy technique finds use in various industries and manufacturing processes. It has become very popular in a very short span of time because of its efficiency and reliable output. Some of them are mentioned here.
- Manufacturing metal bonded diamond tools and materials.
- Manufacturing power tools and modern home appliances.
- Aerospace and Automobile Industry have a huge scope for power metallurgy for making large equipment and machine parts.
- Manufacturing of friction materials, refractory metals, switch materials and electric contact materials.
- Production and processing of metals with high melting points like Tungsten and Molybdenum that are used in electronics industry.
Parts with irregular curves or recesses that are hard to machine can be manufactured using the powder metallurgy techniques. It is suitable for high-volume and mass production with practically negligible wastage of the manufacturing material. The process of secondary machining is virtually eliminated or reduced to negligible extent by the technique of powder metallurgy and it helps in improving efficiency by a huge margin. Cams, sprockets, pawls, iron bearings, sintered bronze, ratchets and carbide tool tips are the most commonly manufactured items with the help of powder technology.
Tools produced using powder metallurgy techniques have high porosity and they are very good at soaking oil. Compaction of constituent materials means strong internal structure resulting in a strong bonding between the material constituents and thus producing a durable machine equipment or tool. Longer life and strong structure are two major characteristics of tools or equipment produced using this technique.