This year, the winners in the 2021 Powder Metallurgy Design Excellence Awards competition included three components made using metal Additive Manufacturing. Organised by the Metal Powder Industries Federation (MPIF), the awards were announced during the International Conference on Powder Metallurgy and Particulate Materials (PowderMet2021), an event co-located with the Additive Manufacturing with Powder Metallurgy (AMPM2021) and Tungsten2021 conferences, held in Orlando, Florida, USA, from June 20–23, 2021.
In the design competition, a total of six Grand Prizes and sixteen Awards of Distinction are presented across the manufacturing categories of conventional Powder Metallurgy (PM), Metal Injection Moulding (MIM) and metal Additive Manufacturing.
A Grand Prize was awarded to Parmatech Corporation, California, USA, in the Hand Tools/Recreation Category for Metal AM components for a 316L stainless steel putter head and hosel, made for Cobra Puma Golf, and used in the King Supersport-35 golf putter. The MPIF explained that the use of Additive Manufacturing technology has allowed designers to place or remove material strategically, ensuring the optimal mass distribution and stiffness. This flexibility also allowed the production of both right and left-hand versions of the putter head and hosel without the need for tooling changes. The development of unique lattice structures also eliminated the need for supports during the sintering process.
In the Aerospace/Military/Firearms Category for Metal AM components, 3DEO Inc., California, USA, received an Award of Distinction for a 17-4 PH stainless steel casing extractor for Glock brand pistols. A hybrid AM approach was said to have been used to make the part, offering the robustness and accuracy of CNC machining and the scalability of MIM, while overcoming the drawbacks of each process. The part has a complex geometry with several small, critical features.
3DEO Inc. received a further Award of Distinction in the Hand Tools/Recreation Category for an open comb base plate used in a double-edge safety razor for their customer Blackland Razors. A hybrid AM approach was also used to make the parts, offering tight dimensional tolerances that set the blade gap for this shaving razor.