Advanced Technical Ceramics - Aluminium Oxide

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Technology abstract

Aluminium Oxide, Al2O3 is a major engineering material. It offers a combination of good mechanical properties and electrical properties leading to a wide range of applications. Due to a much higher life span or higher hardness/resistance to wear and tear ceramic material could easily replace plastic material or metal in many applications. The provider is looking for partnerships in industry to cooperate and develop ceramic solutions for specific applications.

The original technology provider and developer was WESGO Ceramics GmbH, a subsidiary of Morgan Technical Ceramics. WESGO took over the name Morgan Technical Ceramics a few years ago.

- Johannes Schmidt -

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Technology Description

The advanced technical ceramics aluminium oxide (Al2O3) is the most well known and cost effective ceramic material. Due to a combination of good strength, a high E- module, hardness and thermal shock resistance ceramics made of Al2O3 (alumina) are applied in high-temperature applications such as rings, cones, rods, disks, as well those where low friction is required.

These kind of parts are used in various applications like communication-amplifiers for satellites, travelling wave tubes, klystrons, (ion)thrusters, radars and sensors for onboard and ground systems for civil aerospace and (multi-pin) feed-throughs, power tubes, insulators etc.

Alumina can be produced in a range of purities with additives designed to enhance properties. A wide variety of ceramic processing methods can be applied including machining or net shape forming to produce a wide variety of sizes and shapes of component. In addition it can be readily joined to metals or other ceramics using metallizing and brazing techniques.
Process Capabilities:

  • Primary forming methods: isostatic and die pressing
  • Secondary forming: conventional and CNC green machining
  • Sintering kilns
  • Final forming: conventional and CNC hard machining
  • Metallising: cleanroom paint application
  • Metallising: sintering furnaces
  • Metallising: galvanic and cleaning lines
  • Brazing: lab vacuum brazing furnace
  • Various test equipments

Primary forming methods: isostatic and die pressing
Secondary forming: conventional and CNC green machining
In many cases it makes sense to replace metal by alumina due to the superior properties of ceram-ic material. The technology provider offers know how and service for companies considering the alternative for using a professional and technically matured ceramic solution.

The company received DIN EN ISO 9001 certification in 1996 and since 2004, DIN EN ISO 14001 certification is approved.
 

Innovations & Advantages

Material:
Until now Alumina is an excellent all-round material amongst all technical ceramics. Due to chang-ing requirements other materials such as AlN (aluminum nitride) is becoming more popular. It is lower in density and has a better thermal conductivity compared to alumina.

Depending on the specific type, these aluminium oxide ceramics feature a variety of properties:

  • Good strength and stiffness
  • Good hardness and wear resistance
  • Good corrosion resistance
  • Good thermal stability
  • Excellent dielectric properties (from DC to GHz frequencies)
  • Low dielectric constant
  • Low loss tangent

Process:
The metallizing process is very sophisticated. From the production of metallizing paint to the sinter-ing furnace and last but not least the clean-room, we entirely control this process

Current and Potential Domains of Application

Typical applications include:

  • Seal rings
  • Medical prostheses
  • Laser tubes
  • Electronic substrates
  • Ballistic armour
  • Thermocouple tubes
  • Electrical insulators
  • Grinding media
  • Thread guides
  • Wear components

Aluminium oxide ceramics are also used in components for medical device such as X-ray, CT-scanner and laser.

Due to a much higher life span or higher hardness/resistance to wear and tear ceramic material could easily replace plastic material or metal in many applications.