Metal Injection Molding of Titanium Alloy Ti–6Al–4V

MIM titanium parts for bicyclesTitanium and titanium alloys have, as of today, low density, relatively high strength, excellent corrosion resistance in many media and are know to be biocompatible.  This combination of properties makes them an excellent choice for application such as watch parts, medical devices, dental parts and sporting goods. In the recent years, titanium alloys have been more and more used for industrial and commercial purposes, nevertheless, if compared to steel, the annual titanium production is still rather low and it has been mostly used in five sectors: the offshore industry, the chemical industry, the aerospace and automotive industries, the medical devices and implants, and the luxury goods.

This application areas are directly linked with the specific characteristics of titanium: it has a very high strength to density ratio, an excellent corrosion resistance against salt water and several chemical agents, a high biocompatibility and it is aesthetically pleasing.

The high cost of raw materials and processes is the main reason for which titanium application is limited to those sectors where the specific properties of titanium and titanium alloys are so beneficial that higher prices can be tolerated.

Against this background, the MIM process appears to be ideal for the processing of titanium and its alloys, as typical advantages are high material utilization (in terms of yield) and low production costs in large-quantity production.

Another fact that limits the use of titanium is the high machining cost, due to the expensive tools and the low processing speed. Therefore, the typical structure of titanium items is rather simple and not optimized according to the component’s function.

On the contrary, even high complex components can be manufactured by MIM without necessarily increasing costs, with the possibility to introduce titanium in other sectors of application.

FineMIM, thanks to a project developed in cooperation with Dongguan R&D Center, can process Ti-6Al-4V alloy by Titanium Metal Injection Molding obtaining excellent mechanical properties.

The table below contains the properties of Ti6-Al-4V alloy processed by MIM in the facilities of FineMIM.

Ti-6Al-4V = Titanium alloy with 6% Aluminium and 4% Vanadium is also commonly called Ti Grade 5. Ti-6Al-4V is known as the “workhorse” of the titanium industry because it is by far the most common Ti alloy, accounting for more than 50% of total titanium usage. Ti-6Al-4V offers a combination of high strength, light weight, formability and corrosion resistance.

O [wt%] C [wt%] N [wt%] [MPa] [MPa] [GPa] ɛf[%]
MIM Ti-6Al-4V 0,24 0,05 0,02 805 908 107 15

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