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Carbon steel powdered metal parts entering a sintering furnace

Sintering

Expert solutions to help you succeed

For ferrous or non-ferrous metals, the use of nitrogen or hydrogen-based atmospheres can help you achieve the control and purity that are difficult to obtain with generated atmospheres. Nitrogen or hydrogen-based atmospheres help minimize the variations in atmosphere composition and dew point that are common with endothermic and dissociated ammonia atmospheres. Air Products has extensive experience in helping customers optimize and remotely monitor their sintering atmospheres to improve their operations.

​Sintering Expertise and Solutions

Innovative atmospheric solutions

Air Products has developed solutions for more effective lubricant removal, copper infiltration and belt life extension

Customized solutions

Proper selection of the gas mixture type and amount allows for specific metallurgical properties, surface quality, and dimensional control

Consistent atmosphere compositions

With Air Products’ Atmosphere Solutions, variations in atmosphere composition and dew point, typical with endothermic atmospheres and dissociated ammonia, are minimized

Atmosphere trouble-shooting

Experienced applications engineers can identify and resolve furnace atmosphere issues that cause sooting, discolouration, decarburation, oxidation, etc.

Improved quality of sintered components

Air Products’ Atmosphere Solutions for sintering provide an excellent means to improve the quality of sintered components

Offerings

Ask the Expert

​Tom Philips
Tom Philips

Applications Engineer

What determines the dew point reading measured in the hot zone of a sintering furnace?

The dew point in the hot zone of a sintering furnace is a result of different sources of O₂ reacting with the available hydrogen, creating moisture. Assuming there are no cracks in the muffle, water leaks in the cooling sections, or contaminated supply gases, then the following are some known sources of O₂:

  • Diffusion of outside air through the front and exit ends of the furnace, which is influenced by the atmosphere flow rates, door height, exhaust hood designs, flame curtains and plant pressure conditions.
  • Air entrapped in the part, which is a function of part geometry.
  • O₂ content of the powder used, which is usually a known quantity as measured by the H₂ loss number of the powder.
  • Reduction of belt oxides. Reduction of metallic oxides present in brick-lined furnaces.

Once the dew point (H₂O %) is measured, we then can control the oxidation/reduction potential by controlling the amount of H₂ in the atmosphere, thereby adjusting the H₂/H₂O ratio as per the requirements of the material that is being sintered. If you are having a process issue that you think may be related to dew point, please call Air Products at 800-654-4567.

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Case Study

The role of gas constituents in a sintering atmosphere is re-examined in order to optimize sintered properties of iron-carbon powder metal (PM) components.

How to identify and correct oxidation problems?"

Sintering applications: How to identify and correct oxidation problems?

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