MAGNESIUM INJECTION MOULDING (Thixomolding®)
Neue Materialien Fürth GmbH
Thixomolding® is a new production process for magnesium parts. Similar to the injection molding machines for polymers, magnesium granules are metered from a feeding hopper into the cylinder of the machine. Within the screw the magnesium material is heated up and continiously sheared while it is transported to the nozzle. Semi-solid processing as well as casting in the totally liquid state depending on the part dimensions (e.g. wall thickness) can be realized. The molten metal is injected into the mold cavity with high speed under high pressure.
This process offers a number of advantages compared to conventional die casting:
- Lower porosity/less scrap
- Narrow tolerances/less reworking required
- Shorter cycle times/reduced revert material (hot runner)
- Less susceptible to hot cracking
- Longer tool life
- Less maintenance work
- Reduced component wall thickness due to improved temperature control
- New alloys with better creep resistance
- Quick and easy alloy exchange
- Environmentally friendly (inert gas, energy savings)
NMF operates two magnesium injection moulding machines with clamping forces of 220 t and 650 t respectively, which allow shot weights of up to 600 g and 1500 g respectively. Both machines are fully automated for production under industrial conditions.
NMF uses complex component geometries for comparing this new method to conventional casting technologies, and for investigating its potential for use in the automotive, aviation, medical and electronics industries. For this purpose we manufacture components in small batch series.
In addition, this technology is ideal for developing new alloys.