P/M tool steels

The powder metallurgical production route offers many benefits over conventional ingot-cast tool steels. As a raw material, gas-atomised steel powder has a very uniform composition and uniform distribution of fine carbides. During compaction by HIP, the temperature is kept high enough to prevent carbide growth.

Benefits of P/M steels:

• Improved cracking and fatigue resistance due to the refined carbide structure created by the P/M process.

• More freedom of choice in the alloy content of the steel. The wear-resistance of the steel can be improved.

• Better dimensional stability during heat treatment. Any dimensional changes that do occur are smaller, more predictable and more consistent from bar to bar.

• Improved tool life. P/M steels reduce maintenance and downtime costs.

A small and uniform carbide structure makes P/M steels easier to grind and polish. The edges of cutting tools are sharper and the surface finish of polished mould surfaces is improved.

Metal matrix composites

Composite materials are the combination of two or more different materials and sets of properties. The resulting new material possesses a unique combination of properties not available in any conventional materials.

In metal matrix composites (MMC), the continuous phase matrix is a monolithic alloy. A separate discontinuous phase reinforcement consists of metallic, carbon or ceramic additions. Common objectives in the development of MMC materials include enhanced stiffness, strength, creep resistance or wear resistance. Light alloy matrix composites meet an additional requirement of low density.

Typical matrix materials include stainless steel, duplex stainless steel and super alloys.

We develop solutions for customers in the mining and minerals, petrochemical, metallurgy as well as pulp and paper industries.

Extreme wear resistance against heavy abrasion or erosion combined with optimised corrosion resistance are typical characteristics of our materials.

Stainless steel

Austenitic and duplex stainless steels are widely used in the manufacturing of monolithic and compound powder metallurgical P/M components.

The main benefits of using P/M manufacturing for stainless steels are related to the improved material properties as well as precise design.

P/M austenitic stainless steels typically used are 18Cr-8Ni chromium nickel steels. We provide standard grades as well as special grades, which were used for example in the manufacturing of the end covers for CERN's Large Hadron Collider.

Corrosion resistance can be further improved by selecting super austenitic grades such as Ralloy 654MO (24Cr-22Ni-7Mo). P/M duplex stainless steels are widely used, especially in the petrochemical and offshore industries. We offer low-alloy duplex stainless steels of the type 22Cr-5Ni (Duplok 22), as well as high-alloy or super duplex stainless steels of the type 25Cr-7Ni (Duplok 27).