Over many years, the Blue Power and Indutherm (sister company) development team has been engaging in national and international research projects. We cooperate with well-known research institutes and universities. Our customers benefit from the experience we have gained in these projects through high consulting competence and innovative products that constantly set new benchmarks in their segments.
ZIM and BMBF projects
ZIM (Central SME Innovation Program) projects are cooperative R&D projects specially for small and medium-sized companies funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy. Within the scope of these research initiatives, we develop new processes, alloys and plants and cooperate with research partners such as the University Bremen, the Technical University Bergakademie Freiberg and several other research institutes and partners. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research helps fund both essential basic research and application-oriented research. We are currently involved in the BMBF STAVARI project and would like to present more details about this project here.
Our powder atomization plants (Atomisers) were developed within the framework of a ZIM project and in collaboration with the University Bremen. The research is aimed at achieving the economic and flexible manufacture of small quantities of metal powder. The production facilities available on the market up to now have not allowed the economic production of small quantities of powder – frequent changing of alloys requires much more cleaning effort to avoid cross contaminations. However, R&D and precious metal powder applications in particular require small quantities of metal powder and often new alloys that are not available on the market. The rapid development of applications such as SLM or MIM requires increasingly specialized metal powders.
Current research and development
Indutherm Casting Technology is part of the German-Canadian research project HiPTSLAM since 2019. Research institutions, producers and end users are represented in this project with a broad know-how across the entire process chain of additive manufacturing, who are jointly researching new tool steel solutions.
The aim of the HiPTSLAM research project is to determine the requirements for new alloys and alloy powders and their necessary properties for use in the PBF-LB process for the additive manufacturing of components made of high-strength tool steel based on specific application areas of the end products and to develop a method for rapid qualification new alloys for the entire process chain from powder atomization to post-processing.
Indutherm‘s task is the process optimization in the high-temperature atomization of steel, CoCr etc. The project is carried out in close cooperation with Rosswag Engineering, wbk (a company of the KIT, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology) and Guhring, all of whom are also members of the HiPTSLAM network. Their research resulted in the further development of the current gas atomizers into HTC versions with direct inductive heating.
Other current ZIM research and development projects:
The BMBF StaVari (Stahl-Varianz) project deals with the development of a consistent process chain for additive manufacturing of complex, varied and highly functional products made of innovative steel materials. (project time 2016-2019, project number 02P15B056).
Our development team (working under the name of our sister company Indutherm Gießtechnologie GmbH) is part of a network of many well-known research partners:
- EDAG Engineering GmbH
- Ziehm Imaging GmbH
- Salzgitter Mannesmann Forschung GmbH
- Concept Laser GmbH
- Carl Cloos Schweißtechnik GmbH
- Hema electronic GmbH
- Foundation Institute of Materials Science (IWT)
- Hamburg University of Technology
- Institute of Laser and System Technologies (iLAS)
- TU Chemnitz Department of Lightweight Structures and Polymer Technology
Our team focuses on the development of processes for powder manufacturing and qualification of high-quality steel powders for additive manufacturing. Our main objective is the development and testing of plant and process technology for powder atomization (pilot plant scale) that meets most requirements imposed on alloys and applications. We are interested in increasing the output of LAM-capable powder fractions and avoiding satellite formation. The project includes melting, atomization and characterization of alloy variants. Plant and process parameters must be transferred to production plants (concept for upscaling).
For more information, visit www.stavari.de
Low-temperature continuous casting
Development of a continuous casting plant for particularly low-melting alloys e.g. based on Al
ZIM cooperation project (KF2006905LL2) with the TU Bergakademie Freiberg, 2013-2015
- Development of a powder atomization plant for high temperatures
- Up to ~ 1750°C, e.g. for alloys based on Fe/Co/Ni/Pd (in operation since 2016)
- Up to ~ 2000°C, e.g. for platinum alloys, continuous development
ZIM cooperation project (FKZ KF2006907LL4) with the Foundation Institute of Materials Science (IWT) University Bremen, 2014-2016
- Development of an explosion-proof powder atomization plant for aluminum alloy powder
- Development and qualification of innovative aluminum alloy powder for additive manufacturing and high-strength lightweight structures
- Initial operation of pilot plant in autumn 2018 in Bremen
ZIM network project (FKZ 16KN021239) with IWT University Bremen, Institute of Laser and System Technologies (iLAS) TU Hamburg, Powder Light Metals and other industry and institute partners, 2015-2018
IGF projects (industrial collective research)
IGF projects are industrial collective projects. We participate and are actively involved in project-related committees.
Powder atomization and laser additive manufacturing of magnetocaloric materials
AiF project with IWT University Bremen and other industry and institute partners, 2016-2018
Amorphous metal powders
Manufacture and use of amorphous metal powders (Bulk Metallic Glass)
AiF project with IWT University Bremen and other industry and institute partners, 2017-2019, previous project 2014-2016
“Isothermal Digital Single Cell Amplification for the Detection of Antibiotic-resistant Pathogens in Hospitals” (Ag powder development for antibacterial applications among others)
AiF project with FEM (Research Institute for Precious Metals and Metal Chemistry) in Schwäbisch Gmünd and other industry and institute partners, 2015-2018
“Optimized Powders for 3D-Printing”: powder development and manufacture of innovative Cu base powders for laser additive manufacturing of high-strength, high-conductivity components
EC Cornet project with FEM Schwäbisch Gmünd, Fraunhofer UMSICHT (Fraunhofer Institute for Environmental, Safety, and Energy Technology) and other industry and institute partners
“Qualification of Selective Laser Melting of Precious Metals as a Manufacturing Method for the Watch and Jewelry Industry”
Powder development and powder atomization technology for gold powder
AiF project with FEM Schwäbisch Gmünd and other industry and institute partners, 2014-2016
“Alloy Development and Characterization of Materials to Replace Copper-beryllium Alloys”
State of Baden Württemberg – project with Pforzheim University, FEM Schwäbisch Gmünd and other research and institute partners, 2015-2017
- 2014-2016 AiF project “CuMg Hardening and Continuous Casting Technology”
- 2013-2015 State of Baden Württemberg, “CuMgP Hardening and Continuous Casting Technology”
Development of precision casting technologies for titanium components (jewelry, medical technology etc.): “Technologies and Materials for the Manufacture of Precision Casting Molds and Crucibles for Precision Casting of High Melting and Highly Reactive Alloys”
AiF project with FEM Schwäbisch Gmünd, Institute of Ceramic, Glass and Construction Materials (IKGB) at the Technical University Bergakademie Freiberg and other industry and institute partners, 2017-2019
“Innovative Foam Structures for Efficient Lightweighting: Precision Casting Technology for the Manufacture and Melt Infiltration of Foam Structures”
Project of the State of Baden Württemberg with the Pforzheim University, Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences and other industry and institute partners, 2017-2020
“Manufacturing Magnesium Silicide from Infiltrated Metal Foams: Precision Casting Technology for the Manufacture and Melt Infiltration of Foam Structures”
Project of the State of Baden Württemberg with the Pforzheim University, Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences and other industry and institute partners, 2016-2018
If you have further questions, please contact:
Forschung & Entwicklung
Telefon: +49 (0)7203 9218-29