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Powder Metallurgy Design Competition-Metal Injection Molding parts

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The winners of 2019 powder metallurgy design excellence awards competition sponsored by the federation of metal powder industries (MPIF) have been announced. MPIF noted that the winnners demonstrated PM diversity as a manufacturing technology and highlighted how each winning design levered PM's flexibility to advance new concepts and process controls, and demonstrated the capabilities PM provides in component design. Designers continue to use powder metallurgy in key areas such as automotive engines and transmissions, medical devices, consumer products, and hardware. Nine grand prizes and seven merit awards were awarded.

The special prize for automotive metal injection molding parts was awarded by a turbocharger blade  Part’s  complexity includes thin-walled curved outlines and a thick lug at the top. The two-drop hot runner tool is used to produce 12 parts at a time without any sliders 

The special automobile chassis prize for metal injection molding is MIM 17-4PH lock plate for folding roof of passenger cars. The parts are coated with a solid film lubrication to reduce friction during operation of collapsible roof.

It was reported that forming the part was a challenge because the part has two thinner parts connected by a thicker slotted part.

Winning hand tools/entertainment metal injection molding parts are the right and left side binding parts in ski shoes. The parts are made of MIM-4605 which has been passivated with corrosion-resistant zinc blue. Previously, these parts were produced by casting process, which required multiple subsequent treatments to meet required structural and dimensional tolerances.

Hardware/device metal injection molding parts winner is two MIM-17-4 PH parts: brackets and ramp of door hinge. The bracket has a thick, slotted and curved profile, 79 mm in length. By using three slide rails, two slide rails form holes that extend along the length, and another slide rail forms a slot in the center, two parts are produced per injection.  In the past, these parts were made by casting process, which required a lot of machining to reach the required size.

Prize for MIM parts in medical/dental was MIM-17-4 PH K body part for digital surgical cameras. The challenge in molding was to develop a durable sliding mechanism that could easy and accurate match to prevent y-shaped section. Previously, this part was made into two separate parts and then welded. This can create sharp edges that can damage the cable during use.

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