Hot Isostatic Pressing (HIP:ing) Supporting the MIM Industry

Watch Video: Uniform Rapid Quenching of Hammerhead

Hot Isostatic Pressing for the Metal Injection Moulding Industry

For decades, Hot Isostatic Pressing (HIP) has been used successfully by manufacturers around the world. HIP is used to eliminate pores and remove defects, i.e. pores, oxides and carbides, to dramatically increase the material properties.

With typical pressures from 400 to 2,070 bar (5,800 to 30,000 psi) and temperatures up to 2,000°C (3,632°F), HIP can achieve 100% of maximum theoretical density and improve the ductility and fatigue resistance of critical, high-performance materials. The components after sintering for MIM, regardless of de-binding method, benefit from HIPing.

A proven process for Metal Injection Moulding (MIM) parts

Common applications for Hot Isostatic Pressing include defect healing of MIM parts (pore elimination), consolidation of metal powder and diffusion bonding of dissimilar metals or alloys. The technology is expanding into new applications for fire arms applications as well as heat treatment.

sample body assembly perfected on Quintus HIP
Body assembly
Sample Sports Watch MIM part perfected on Quintus HIP
Sports watchcase
Trigger Guard Part perfected on Quintus HIP
Trigger guard
Open center impeller MIM part perfected on Quintus HIP
Open center impeller
Handcuff parts perfected on Quintus press
Handcuff parts
Gun Safety lock parts post processed on Quintus HIP
Gun safety lock parts

All photos courtesy of MPIF

HIP and Heat Treatment Simultaneously

Quintus Uniform Rapid Cooling (URC®) and optional Uniform Rapid Quenching (URQ®) furnaces can provide decreased cycle time, higher productivity, and a unique HIP cycle that includes heat treatment. Benefits are reduced energy consumption, reduced costs, improved quality control and the material is ready for following production steps, i.e machining, polishing, etc.

Pore elimination gives dramatic effects of the fatigue life when it comes to stress levels and number of cycles before failure. Up to 10 times improvement can be achieved by HIPing in the right conditions.

Post treatment
By applying the right conditions in the HIP, post-treatment steps like in a stress relief furnace, the total cycle times can be shortened by 50%.

A proven process for additive manufacturing parts
Common applications for hot isostatic pressing include defect healing of AM parts (pore elimination), consolidation of Titanium powder and diffusion bonding of dissimilar metals or alloys. The technology is expanding into new applications for aerospace applications as well as heat treatment.

Improving parts for the aerospace industry
Of all the HIP installations in the world, more than 50% are utilized to consolidate and improve the material properties of Titanium and Superalloys for the aerospace industry. Today HIP is the standard procedure to give longer and predictive life time of fan blades in an aircraft engine.

Regardless of alloy system, or 3D printing method (EBM, SLM, etc.), HIP is the way forward for optimized material properties and cost savings for safe and efficient production with high quality.

Quintus Technologies unique variable cooling and heating rates allow for control quality of mechanical properties

U2RC – Uniform Ultra Rapid Cooling with different pressures

Variable cooling and heating rates and pressure levels will make it possible to precisely control the quality and mechanical properties of treated parts.

Chart shows High Pressure Heat Treatment improves mechanical defects of Aerospace parts

Improving parts for the aerospace industry

Courtesy of Bodycote

Why you should HIP

Reasons why you should HIP

100% of theoretical density

  • Longer life time
  • Predictive life time
  • Lighter and/or low weight designs

Improved material properties

  • Increased mechanical properties e.g. fatigue, wear, abrasion and elongation
  • Reduced scatter of material properties
  • Stress relief of MIM parts

More efficient production vs. traditional manufacturing

  • MIM combined with HIP can reduce energy use up to 50%
  • MIM combined with HIP can reduce material costs up to 90%

HIP is expanding into new applications such as:

  • Automotive and Aerospace
  • HIPing of large volumes
  • Material heat treatment by quenching
  • Stress relief by temperature and pressure
  • MIM parts, i.e., fire-arms, watches, automotive, consumer electronics, etc.
Open center impeller MIM part perfected on Quintus HIP

Open center impeller
Photo courtesy of MPIF

HIP Quenching Values

Controlled cooling rates up to 3,000°C/min can be achieved by combining possibilities of pressure and temperature control that the URQ can offer:

  • Heat treatment steps can be included into the HIP cycle
  • Shortened lead time
  • Process steps, like stress relief, can be removed from the usual process route to increase productivity and lower cost/kg

Benefits compared to conventional heat treatment methods:

  • Programmable temperature distribution with good accuracy
  • No distortion due to reduced thermal stresses
  • No cleaning or drying of parts after quenching
  • Reduced cracking

New and unique materials can be achieved

  • Material optimization
  • Improved fatigue and ductility
  • Non-castable alloy compositions

Common applications include

  • Defect healing of MIM parts (pore elimination)
  • Consolidation of powder metal and ceramic parts
  • Diffusion bonding

Uniform Rapid Quenching of hammerhead – 500 C/min

Quintus Uniform Rapid Quenching technology of a hammerhead at 500C/min

Due to the high pressure, quenching in a HIP avoids thermal stresses, warping or cracking of your parts, compared with oil and/or water quenching.

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