VDM Metals GmbH has announced that it is putting a new powder atomisation plant into operation at its site in Unna, Germany. VDM presented its plans for powder production for Additive Manufacturing at the 2017 Paris Air Show this week and the company states that this investment will allow the company to extend its product portfolio.
The cornerstone for this expansion was laid back in November 2016. The development includes the construction of a new hall for powder production as well as procurement of the required units.
A vacuum inert gas atomisation (VIGA) plant forms the core of the powder manufacturing facility, comprising a vacuum induction melting furnace and an atomisation unit in which the extremely pure powder is produced under vacuum conditions via vacuum induction melting and subsequent inert gas atomisation. The plant is currently in the commissioning phase.
“Our aim is to consolidate our position as a world market leader in high-performance materials with this investment”, stated Dr Niclas Müller, Chief Executive Officer. “This means we can rise to the challenge of utilising new technologies to thrive in tomorrow’s changing market environment. The new production plant will allow us to extend our product portfolio as a reliable supplier of powder materials.”
Additive production processes are on the verge of becoming indispensable – even in demanding industries such as aerospace, chemicals and medical technology, stated the company. As a result, it is seeking cooperative ventures with customers, industrial enterprises and universities. “Our teams are not only working towards manufacturing proven materials as powder – they are also striving to develop and qualify new powder alloys, so as to be able to cover a broad application spectrum,” it was stated.
“Experts agree that generative manufacturing is akin to a technical revolution set to create undreamt-of opportunities in production and industry as a whole”, explained Müller. “Along with our cooperation partners, we’re currently fathoming what developments and opportunities this sector promises to offer. We’re in a very exciting phase and want to share in the technical development here too, while shaping the market for metallic powder materials.”