Powder atomization 101

In our newly inaugurated, state-of-the-art titanium powder plant, the making of our titanium powder begins inside an atomization tower standing nine meters high, safely enclosing the process of EIGA; short for electrode inert gas atomization.

A vertically oriented, rotating titanium electrode is melted at one end, through a conical induction coil. The design of the coil is optimized to achieve just the right temperature to cause the melt to drop or – when skillfully controlled –continuously stream from the electrode end.

As the metal runs through a slit below it is transformed by a high-velocity stream of argon, causing the melt to atomize. The outcome is millions and millions of micro-droplets that cascade down the tower and, as they fall, solidify to forms fine powder grains of spherical perfection that are ultimately collected in an airtight container.

To ensure our deliveries turn out top-of-the-line in terms of quality as well as homogeneity, the container is then moved to a sieving tower. Here, the powder passes through double sieves that separate the grains into three containers; one for the finished AM product, and two that are either re-melted or used in other manufacturing processes.

Finally, the titanium powder is thoroughly blended, as a final step in safeguarding the premium consistency that is one of the most appreciated areas of differentiation when it comes to Osprey® metal powders by Sandvik. To finish the process off, a robot packs and seals the powder which is then ready to embark on its journey from us to you.

Quick facts

  • State-of-the-art atomizing plant with electrode melting
  • Electrode Inert Gas Atomization technology (EIGA)
  • Atomizing high-quality titanium powder with low oxygen and nitrogen levels
  • Dedicated downstream sieving tower, large scale blending and packing facility
  • The plant also includes a sieving tower for nickel-based superalloys
  • Highly automated, ensuring even better reliability and consistency
  • Full traceability, having the full supply chain inhouse – from titanium sponge to finished powder
  • Producing high quality titanium powders for Additive Manufacturing
  • Located in Sandviken, Sweden, close to Sandvik’s Additive Manufacturing Center
  • The investment amounts to ~200 MSEK in total