Expo exhibitor interview: Yoshitaka Fukushima, Atect Corporation

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What are the current challenges in powder injection molding (PIM)?

Molding different materials at a density equivalent to solvents is challenging. Another challenge is learning how to mold highly universal and low-melting-point materials such as Cu and Al, which has been considered impossible in the PIM industry until now.

What new technologies is Atect working on at the moment?

Although stainless steel is generally used for PIM, we are working on the development of difficult-to-mold special ceramic, ultra-hardness steel e.g. tungsten carbide, heat-resistant steel, magnetic materials and low-melting-point materials in order to mold them at a high density and produce a stable supply.

How will PIM technology have changed by 2030?

Although precision in the process in terms of achieving the desired dimensions has been considerably improved compared with 10 years ago, an abrasive machining after-process is still sometimes required in order to meet highly strict specifications. In 2030, we believe that meeting these specifications without an after-process will be possible.

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Dean has been with UKi Media & Events for over a decade, having previously cut his journalistic teeth writing and editing for various automotive and engineering titles. He combines extensive knowledge of all things automotive with a passion for driving, and experience testing countless new vehicles, engines and technologies around the world. As well as his role as editor-in-chief across a range of UKi's media titles, he is also co-chair of the judging panel of the International Engine of the Year Awards.

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