Nano Dimension completes installation of new Elnik sintering furnace at Formatec

June 10, 2024

June 10, 2024

Nano Dimension has successfully installed Elnik’s MIM 3000 sintering furnace (Courtesy Nano Dimension)
Nano Dimension has successfully installed Elnik’s MIM 3000 sintering furnace (Courtesy Nano Dimension)

Nano Dimension, based in Waltham, Massachusetts, USA, has announced the completed installation of an Elnik Systems’ MIM 3000 series sintering furnace at its Formatec facility in Goirle, the Netherlands.

“This state-of-the-art Metal Injection Molding (MIM) furnace from Elnik Systems will undoubtedly drive further growth in this technology segment, enhancing our ability to produce high-end, complex metal components alongside our renowned ceramic components,” the company posted on LinkedIn.

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The new furnace will enable Formatec to debind and sinter MIM components in-house rather than using a toll-sintering specialist. Prior to this investment, sintering services were outsourced to DSH Technologies, a company affiliated to Elnik Systems with toll-sintering operations in both the US and Germany.

Formatec has provided MIM services to its customer base since 2020. Prior to this, it was focused on Ceramic Injection Molding (CIM) and ceramic Additive Manufacturing, serving sectors that include luxury goods such as watchcases, as well as industrial components.

The team celebrating the installation of the new Elnik sintering furnace (Courtesy Nano Dimension)
The team celebrating the installation of the new Elnik sintering furnace (Courtesy Nano Dimension)

The MIM 3000 series

Elnik’s MIM 3000 sintering furnace is able to process any metal with any binder in a one-step debinding and sintering cycle without having to move the parts. This is accomplished through a gas-tight refractory metal retort and gas management system.

The gas management system consists of mass flow controllers for the retort and hot zone, and a partial pressure valve at the inlet of a specially designed and modified dry vacuum pump. Different flows of gases into the hot zone and retort enable a minimum of binder materials stick to the cold walls of the furnace. The retort has gas plenums on each side with a hole pattern to allow the heated gas flows evenly across each shelf in the retort.

ACCU-Temp, a linearisation technique which allows each of the six zones within the furnace to run within +/- 1ºC of the actual temperature inside the retort. Wire-certified thermocouples with different calibration points are used and any difference in calibration is corrected via this proprietary linearisation programme. This enables the user to achieve higher densities of MIM materials by programming the sintering temperature closer to the actual melting temperature without running the risk of overheating and therefore distorting the parts.

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June 10, 2024

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