GKN Additive has announced it will begin distributing gas- and water-atomized metal powders for the European additive manufacturing market. As part of the distribution, GKN Additive will be locally producing and warehousing its metal AM powders to reduce delivery and lead times for customers.
The decision to distribute metal powders across Europe was made in order to meet a growing demand for industrial AM metals in the region. Today, GKN Additive Materials warehouses a range of standard AM powders, including 316L, 17-4PH and 20MnCr5, at its facility in Hueckeswagen, Germany. Because of high delivery orders coming from across Europe, however, the company will expand its production and warehousing efforts.
GKN Additive Materials, a joint venture formed by GKN Additive and GKN Hoeganaes earlier this year, will store a selection of gas- and water-atomized powders as well as certain custom materials, which will be warehoused for specific clients and shipped on an as-need basis.
Presently, GKN Hoeganaes produced over 300,000 tons of metal powders a year at its various facilities, including those in Gallatin, TN (U.S.); Bazhou, China; and Buzau, Romania. The Romanian facility recently completed its first trials of producing water-atomized powders for AM. Trialled materials included low alloy steels for automotive and structural applications: ANCOR AM 4600 and ANCOR AM DP600. Both metal powders are now under evaluation by European research groups such as SUPREME and IDAM, as well as customers in North America.
By commencing distribution of AM powders in Europe, GKN Additive ultimately hopes that it will be better equipped to supply powders to customers in a more timely manner. Its focus on water-atomized low alloy steels will result in a broader material offering with more applications being addressed.
GKN Additive will be attending Formnext next week, where more information about its metal AM powders and its new distribution effort can be obtained.