MIM, also known as metal powder injection molding, is the introduction of plastic injection molding technology into the field of powder metallurgy and the formation of a new type of powder metallurgy near-net shaping technology, in the processing of complex geometric shape, uniform organizational structure, excellent performance of near-net shaping parts has a unique advantage.
MIM in 3C electronics, medical equipment, automotive parts, hardware tools, and other areas of application, in the cell phone cartouche, camera ring metal protection frame and other parts of the production of manufacturing exceptionally favored the technology.
2020 by the epidemic, the manufacturing industry slowed down, and electronic consumption bore the brunt, but it can be predicted that such a suppression is not the disappearance of demand, but the demand is delayed. 5G replacement wave will still come, just a matter of time. MIM as an innovative process, in the manufacturing industry wave is very necessary at the present time. The following and small makeup to understand it!
Metal Powder Injection Molding Process
MIM is a variety of micro-fine metal powder (generally less than 20um) according to a certain ratio and preset binder, made of feedstock with rheological properties, injected into the mold cavity through the injection machine molding out parts blanks, blanks after removing the binder and high-temperature sintering, you can get a variety of metal parts.
Parts manufactured through the MIM process, in some areas with machining and precision casting methods can not be compared to the advantages. Summarized to reflect the following aspects:
- Unrestricted structure: like the production of plastics, complex metal parts can be molded directly;
- Mass production is easy: suitable for large quantities of continuous production, batch requirements for larger products to highlight the advantages of the process;
- Reliable physical properties: uniform organization of products, good densification, good surface finish;
- Higher quality accuracy: the dimensional accuracy of the products can reach +/-0.1-0.5% in a single molding;
- Great material selectivity: stainless steel, soft magnetic alloy, iron-nickel material, tungsten alloy, tungsten carbide, tool steel, etc.;
- Cost reduction is obvious: the structure of complex parts in large quantities, and mass production, the cost can be significantly reduced.
Situation Initially Open, Consumer Electronics Growth Space
Review the history of MIM development, its growth is mainly with the electronics industry on the demand for MIM fluctuations, with a certain degree of cyclicality. From 2009 the whole industry rocketed, especially in 2011, by Apple and Samsung Electronics two commodity competitors, in the cell phone device with a large number of MIM parts, greatly stimulated the application and development of MIM technology.
The Apple Lightning connector is a new type of data cable used since the iPhone 5, made with MIM technology, with a production quantity of over 1 billion units (from 2012 to the end of 2018), and is currently the largest MIM consumer electronics product in terms of shipments.
Currently the largest shipment of MIM consumer products - Apple lightning connector. The advantages of the MIM camera bracket are very prominent, and the potential market size of the MIM multi-camera bracket is expected to exceed 7 billion yuan. In recent years the rear three-camera and four-camera penetration rates gradually increased, along with the increase in the number of cameras, the internal structure of the module is more densified, and more complex structure, The MIM camera bracket has a higher economy, higher product complexity, higher dimensional accuracy advantages, is expected to be in the future in the three-camera, four-camera bracket in the MIM process penetration rate rapidly increased.
Huawei P20 Pro camera decomposition parts, camera ring is MIM parts
Along with the volume of folding screen cell phones, the folding screen hinge is expected to become the next new growth point of the MIM process. In 2019, Samsung and Huawei launched folding screen cell phones one after another, and Xiaomi and OV, etc., plan to launch related products in 2020. Huawei Mate X and Mate Xs hinge parts are composed of MIM parts and BMG parts, and the hinge is thinner and more complex, which is the most technically difficult, most demanding, and highest gross margin product in the MIM industry. In the long term, other domestic manufacturers may adopt solutions similar to Huawei's, and the MIM market will further expand.
The size of the MIM market reached 8.5 billion yuan in 2019, and industry analysis shows that the annual increment of only camera bracket products in 2020-2021 can pull the MIM industry to grow by 20%. At the same time, considering the growth in demand for MIM in TWS headphones, wearable devices, etc., the growth rate of the industry (excluding hinges) in the next three years can be maintained at more than 30%.
With the manufacturing advantages of the MIM process, the related demand is expected to increase significantly. Advanced understanding of MIM technology, for 3C electronics, medical, and other fields of manufacturing enterprises to better complete small, batch, and complex parts processing is very useful!