Pushing PM technology to a new level
On September 18, around 200 persons from the powder metal (PM) and automotive industries gathered in Höganäs to take part in the PoP Day 2013, which offered a comprehensive all-day programme with presentations, technical demonstrations, tours, discussions, some fun – and a surprise unveiling.
Hans Söderhjelm, Vice President, Marketing & Product Development, Höganäs AB, says that, “The ‘Power of Powder®’ campaign has been running for four years. We wanted to show customers and end-users what we can actually achieve at our PoP Centre when working closely together, and hopefully they will get inspired to collaborate with us on future projects and to jointly develop new business opportunities.”
The day started off with six presentations by key persons in the automotive and PM business. The main focus was on using PM technology to produce car transmission gears. The message was clear that the potential is huge, but several challenges have to be overcome.
“A highlight for me,” said Eckart Schneider, Global Development Manager PM Components, who organised the day, “was to hear that Getrag, the world’s largest independent gearbox manufacturer, will start industrialising their PM gear manufacturing. That’s a fantastic sign that we’re on the right track. If they start doing it, others will follow.”
Of course, Höganäs is well prepared. The visitors could witness the unveiling of the company’s “Soon Powered by Powder Metal Transmission Gears” car. This cooperation with some of the leading companies in the entire PM value chain is set to be a major breakthrough.
One enthusiastic visitor said: “We could never imagine that all the gearbox gears could be made from powder metal. This is the future of PM manufacturing.”
It could not be done if Höganäs did not have the technical competence and platform, and this was on ample display on an 11-stop tour of the PoP Centre, showcasing the company’s cutting-edge PM technology.
“As a PM producer I was impressed by the new equipment and capabilities (new presses and furnaces), but also by the 3D printing,” said one visitor. “The ways Höganäs finds to increase the PM business is fantastic.”