Process development mainly includes adaption and optimization of existing technologies for compaction of powders into net shape components as well as metal forming by taking into account all specific requirements for those alloys under discussion. Coating technologies for protection of surfaces is a secondary target in this situation. Another important aspect is recycling of milling chips and unavoidable process scrap. Recycling can be done at different levels of the process chain.
Actual activities in process development include projects like:
Points of major interest within development are our alloys.
In this connection PLM makes use of improved alloying strategies (higher content of alloying elements, addition of elements difficult to alloy) as well as of all process technology based options which are given by powder metallurgy (rapid solidification or blending of different powders).
By taking advantage of these additional degrees of freedom nano- and/or quasi-crystalline structures can be generated in dispersion strengthened aluminum alloys.
The following alloys / properties / structures are subject of intensified activities:
Most important for a successful transformation of alloy properties into an application is product development. These activities are mostly conducted in cooperation with one or two customers as key players. On customer request such cooperation may be honored with a preferred support by PLM during the first market introduction. PLM also gives strong support to the customer during the product development phase to make sure that a PM friendly design has first priority.
In the following some examples for product segments have been listed:
For more specific products it makes sense to carry out direct development for a customer or it is even requested by a customer. PLM is prepared to enter into such an obligation. In such a case an alloy can be developed or improved for a special application.
Development by order is restricted by some conditions such like: