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Liberty Steel Powder Metal Design & Atomisation

Liberty Powder Metals Ltd. are developing a £10 million facility within the Materials Processing Institute (MPI) in Tees Valley, supporting innovative research into new powder metal alloys required by this developing industry.

The project is focused on developing and manufacturing new speciality alloy metal powders for end users to use in net shape and additive manufacturing applications like 3D printing engine parts. It is very new technology and multiple industry sectors are investing heavily in net shape technologies; Aerospace (Boeing, GE Aviation, GKN, Rolls-Royce), Automotive (GM, JLR, Renault, BMW) and Energy (Siemens).

This is an initial investment into one 250kg batch vacuum atomiser which will be built inside MPI in Grangetown, Middlesbrough which is big enough to house the atomiser which is 10m tall. The production capacity is 335 tonnes per annum, with 25% of this dedicated to industrial R&D to develop new steel and nickel alloys. Initial work will develop the process using the new facility based around current steel types.

This will be base learning for the research and development of advanced nickel based alloys. This R&D capacity can also be used for open access and collaborative research programmes as soon as the equipment is commissioned.  Many end users and research establishments are working on the development of vacuum atomised metal powders and require the use of this type of equipment but there are only 2 vacuum atomisers currently in the UK.

Progress

If you have any questions about this project please contact us