The above-given abbreviation or acronym is surely going to be easy for new startup engineers with highly industrious plans to remember. And it refers to metal injection molding. It entails a so-called powder coating (metal) process. During such a process, metallic feedstock is forced under pressure into its tool cavity. Interestingly enough, the behavior of MIM feedstock is monitored by what is known as rheology; the study of sludges and suspensions.
The MIM process is similar to that of injection molding. The only difference here of course is that metal injection molding is making use of the powder metal feedstock.
One part needs to pass through a de-binding process. This gets followed by what is known as a sintering process. This process is necessary to produce the high strength metal part. A tool cavity gets created using just two hardened tool steel dies. These dies have already been machined into its required shape. The majority of MIM parts will be composed of stainless steel alloys. But it is also not unusual to expect other so-called exotic materials, such as titanium, to be used.
The single-most benefit for processing nerve centers and manufacturing floors is that metal injection molding is able to produce intricate parts from steel and metalized materials that could not have been properly die-cast or easily machined elsewhere or conventionally. Secondary operations will include ongoing machine work, as well as plating and finishing processes, all of which leads to the supply of the finished part.
Ultimately, a finished part will always be a small component that can be applied to just so many industries today. The capacity of today’s (heavy) industry molding machines appears to be insurmountable in the sense that they have holding capacities of up to sixty, even one hundred and fifty tons.