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New lubricated powders and mixing technology for use at elevated temperatures to increase green density

Development of a lubricant for the warm compaction of metal powders, together with the associated mixing technology, in order to produce powder metallurgical components with a very high density (98% of wrought density).

The goal of this project is to develop a new lubricant, together with an appropriate mixing process, in order to allow the production of homogeneous blends of metallic, metallic-organic or metallic-inorganic powders for use in warm compaction. Warm compaction was developed in the mid-80's as a new and low cost method for compacting metal powders to high densities, but has only recently begun to be used for industrial series production. The technique involves heating the compacting die to temperatures between 100 and 150 degrees C, together with the powder hopper and feeder system. This has the effect of lowering the yield stress of the metallic powder, making it possible to plastically deform the material to achieve a higher density than that obtained using the same compaction pressure without heating. In order to achieve this effect it is vital that the powder is correctly lubricated, and that the lubricant maintains its properties at these elevated temperatures. The quantity of lubricant that must be added is also important, since as the quantity of lubricant is increased, the maximum pressed density that can be reached, is reduced. A limitation of currently used lubricants is that a minimum of 0.5% by weight must be added. This restricts the maximum theoretical density attainable to 96%. Since density is the single most important parameter in powder metallurgy, controlling strength, ductility, and both impact and fatigue resistance, the development of a highly effective lubricant for warm compaction that be used in reduced amounts (
Acronym: 
LUPOW
Project ID: 
2 937
Start date: 
01-01-2003
Project Duration: 
24months
Project costs: 
1 550 000.00€
Technological Area: 
Iron and Steel, Steelworks
Market Area: 

Raising the productivity and competitiveness of European businesses through technology. Boosting national economies on the international market, and strengthening the basis for sustainable prosperity and employment.