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Microwave Plasma Process

Originally Published MPMN June 2005

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Microwave Plasma Process Heat-Treats Metals

The technology operates at atmospheric pressure in small portable systems

Susan Wallace

AtmoPlas technology operates at atmospheric pressure, eliminating the need for a vacuum.

Using microwave-absorbing plasma created with almost any gas, a technology rapidly heats parts and controls arcing. Using AtmoPlas from Dana Corp. (Toledo, OH), parts are surrounded with the plasma and confined within a ceramic-walled cavity that is transparent to microwaves. As the plasma absorbs the microwaves the temperature of the plasma rises and parts heat rapidly.

Microwave plasma technology has traditionally required the creation of a vacuum. However, AtmoPlas operates at atmospheric pressure. This ability to function without a vacuum is unprecedented, according to the company.

AtmoPlas delivers up to 1200°C in seconds, with no known upper temperature limit. More precise distribution of heat is provided when compared with furnace systems, according to the company. The technology is offered in small, portable heat-treating units to support a flexible manufacturing environment.

Compatible processes include heat treatments such as hardening, carburizing, sintering, and annealing; joining techniques such as brazing and welding; and surface treatments such as hard material coatings and plasma cleaning. One system performs different processes in the same workstation in sequence. For example, sintering can be done, then carburizing.

Dana Corp.
P.O. Box 1000
Toledo, OH 43697
P: 419/535-4500
www.atmoplas.com

Copyright ©2005 Medical Product Manufacturing News

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