Jun 19, 2020

Can Sinter-based AM Compete With Powder Injection Molding?

A small CIM part. This fibre optic ferrule features sixty-four octangular shaped holes, each of 125 µm diameter, positioned on a surface of 2 x 2 mm. The part requires no post-sintering finishing operations (Courtesy Formatec)

Small, complex metal and ceramic parts are in high demand in numerous international markets. Manufacturing processes such as Powder Injection Molding (PIM), a term that encompasses Metal Injection Molding (MIM) and Ceramic Injection Molding (CIM), have been able to serve these markets well and continue to flourish.

However, in the current rapidly evolving commercial environment, many of the small components that are being designed have ever more complex geometries, seek to make use of more ambitious design freedoms, and come with a demand for much shorter lead times.

Geometries that challenge PIM’s current shaping capabilities are, therefore, creating new opportunities for the Additive Manufacturing industry, most notably for sinter-based Additive Manufacturing processes. So, what are the opportunities for these processes to complement PIM, and how do the numbers stack up?

In this article our Admatec and Formatec teams present an overview of Vat Photopolymerization (VPP) and PIM technologies. The business cases and the advantages of each process are highlighted, and we explain the differences between the both and what possibilities each can offer.

Read the full article in Powder Injection Moulding International magazine.

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