Scientists from South Ural State University developed a new method for creating powder metal composites. The method will reduce waste and improve the quality of electrical products and, as a result, increase the economic efficiency of production by 30%. The study was published in the journal Metallurgist.
A team of scientists from SUSU introduced a unique method and design of a mixing machine for making composite powder based on graphitoplast compositions and coke pitch. The new method will improve the quality of finished raw materials for the subsequent pressing process and reduce waste in the field of nuclear energy, aviation and space industry, metallurgy and electric transport. The study is carried out in the International Laboratory of Mechanics, Laser Processes and Digital Production Technologies of SUSU.
Experts have proposed a number of techniques for powder mixing to obtain a multicomponent material. Products made from this material are of high quality due to the most uniform distribution of properties over the product. In different parts of the product, the material has the same physical and mechanical properties, such as, for example, strength and density.
Mixing is one of the most important stages in the production of metal powders. For this process, experts have developed a new graphitoplast composition and the mixing machine, which makes high-quality blend and increases the material utilization up to 98%.
“The results obtained are unique and can be used in other technological operations and equipment related to the processes of product manufacturing from composite powder materials,” D.Sc., professor at the Department of Metal Forming Marina Samodurova said.
Scientists have examined the technology of mixing the components of powder blends more thoroughly than in previous studies. The essence of the process of making compositions by mixing involves the adsorption, adhesion, and immersion wetting of the surfaces of carbon powders with a liquid binder.
The team of scientists believes that companies involved in the production of mixing machines might be interested in these developments, as they increase the efficiency of the equipment due to less waste when mixing, improve the quality of the finished blend and simplify the design of mixing machines.
In the future, scientists plan to create high-entropy powder blends. This is a new direction in science. Components can be completely different in their physical and mechanical properties, having different density indices and particle size distribution.
According to experts, highly entropic blends can be widely demanded not only in powder metallurgy. The quality of composite powder is of great importance in additive manufacturing, where products are made using 3D printing technology.
SUSU is a participant in the 5-100 Project, intended to increase the competitiveness of Russian universities among the world's leading research and educational centers. Research in the field of materials science is one of the three strategic areas for the development of scientific and educational activities of South Ural State University along with IT and ecology.