Powder Metallurgy-Characteristic, Necessity, Advantages, Disadvantages and Application of Powder Metallurgy

Characteristic and Necessity for Powder Metallurgy :

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The concept of Powder Metallurgy:

  • Powder Metallurgy is can be defined as the process of preparation and process the powdered iron and nonferrous metals are called as Powder Metallurgy.
  • It can also be defined as Powder Metallurgy is the process whereby metallic shapes are manufactured from metallic powders.
  • Powder metallurgy is used to make unique materials impossible to get from melting or forming in other ways.
  • A very important product of this type is tungsten carbide (WC). WC(tungsten carbide chemical formula) is used to cut and form other metals and is made from WC particles bonded with cobalt.
  • It is very widely used in industry for tools of many types and globally ~50,000t/yr is made by PM.
  • Other products include sintered filters, porous oil-impregnated bearings, electrical contacts and diamond tools.

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This process involves a series of steps as follows:

1. Manufacturing of the Powder.
2. The powder is injected into a mold or die under pressure.
3. Then giving high-temperature treatment sintering to the object obtained, which is conducted at a temperature below the point of the basic metal.

Characteristic and Necessity for Powder Metallurgy

Characteristic and Necessity for Powder Metallurgy:

Necessity or Need for Powder Metallurgy:

Power metallurgy becomes very much in the following cases:

1. The difference in melting temperature of two elements.
2. Melting and solidification cause poor quality.
3. Melting causes loss of identifying the constituents.
4. Some metals do not form a liquid solution.

Characteristic of Metal Powder:

1. It should be heat resistant.
2. Size of the powder particles is to pass the powder through the screen (sieves) having a definite number of meshes.
3. The powder should have good plasticity.
4. The powder should have an ability to be cold pressed.
5. The powder should have an excellent parking factor.
6. The powder should have a good flowability.
7. The powder should be free from oxides and should have a clean surface.
8. The ratio of the density of the compact to the apparent density of the powder should vary between 2:1 to 3:1

Advantage, Disadvantage, and Application:

Advantages of Powder Metallurgy:

1. The parts can be produced clean, bright and ready for use.
2. The composition of the product can be controlled effectively.
3. Articles of any intricate shape can be manufactured.
4. Close dimensional tolerance can be achieved.
5. The machining operation is almost eliminated.
6. Parts have excellent finish and high dimensional accuracy.
7. There is the overall economy as material wastage is negligible.
8. Metals and non-metals can be mixed in any proportion.
9. A wide range of properties such as porosity, density etc. can be achieved effectively.
10. High production rate can be achieved.
11. Reduced production time.
12. Highly skilled labor is not required.
13. Saving in the material through reduced wastage.
14. Composition structure and properties can be controlled easily.
15. A wide range of parts with special electrical and magnetic properties can be produced.

Disadvantages of Powder Metallurgy:

1. High initial cost of metal powder.
2. Size of the parts produced is limited due to large presses and needed to get required compressing pressure.
3. The equipment used for the operation is costly.
4. The impossibility of having a completely dense product.
5. Pressure up to 100 tonnes capacity is used even for a small product.
6. The metal powder is expensive and in some case difficult to store.
7. Some power may present explosion hazards.
8. Dies used must be of high accuracy and capable of withstanding high pressure and temperature.
9. Parts produced have poor ductility.
10. High tooling cost.
11. The difficulty of sintering low melting powder.
12. Poor plastic properties.
13. The necessity of protective atmospheres.

Application of Powder Metallurgy:

1. To produce a porous product.
2. To produce Babbitt bearing for automobiles.
3. To produce oil pump gears for automobiles.
4. Used for production of cutting tools, wire drawing dies and deep drawing dies.
5. To produce refractory metal composites, eg: tungsten, molybdenum, tantalum
6. For manufacturing the tungsten wires for filaments in the lamp industry.
7. Diamond impregnated tools are produced by the mixture of iron powder and diamond dust.
8. To produced electrical contract material, eg: circuit breakers, relays and resistance welding electrodes.
9. Parts of cars, aircraft, gas turbine, electric clocks etc.
10. Parts of vacuum cleaners, refrigerators
11. Parts of guns, sewing machines.

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