Epson Atmix to Build New Factory at the Site of the Kita-Inter Plant
- New factory will increase amorphous alloy powder production capacity to meet future demand -
Epson Atmix Kita-Inter Plant (the new factory is circled)
- AOMORI and TOKYO, Japan, April 20, 2016 -
Seiko Epson Corporation (TSE: 6724, "Epson") today announced that Group company Epson Atmix Corporation, the global market share leader in superfine alloy powders*1, will invest approximately 1.25 billion yen in a new factory at its Kita-Inter Plant in the city of Hachinohe, Aomori, to meet growing market demand for amorphous alloy powders*2.
Construction of the new amorphous alloy powder factory, which is scheduled to go online in January 2018, will begin in November 2016. By building a new factory at the Kita-Inter Plant to augment existing production at the company's head office factory and by making additional future investments, Epson Atmix aims to increase its amorphous alloy powder production capacity from the current 2,000 tons per year to approximately 6,000 tons per year by 2025.
The new factory will not only stabilize product supply but will play an important role in ensuring business continuity in the event of a disaster.
Epson Atmix produces superfine allow powders that are used in the production of high-performance precision components for vehicles, smartphones, tablet PCs, wearable products, medical equipment, and a wide variety of other products. In 2004, Epson Atmix began volume-producing*3 amorphous alloy powder using an original production method called SWAP*4 (spinning water atomization process). Amorphous alloy powders have high magnetic flux densities and low energy loss in addition to excellent high-frequency characteristics. These characteristics make amorphous alloy powders extremely attractive as performance-enhancing, highly functional material powders that enable small, low-power voltage control components and that support high frequencies and large currents. Demand from the smartphone, wearable product, low-power component, and automotive industries in particular has been growing by the year, and this trend is expected to continue for the foreseeable future.
Epson Atmix is committed to leveraging its unique metal powder manufacturing technology to continue to create customer-pleasing, trusted products and services.
Epson Atmix Kita-Inter Plant Profile (After New Factory Construction)
|Address||2 Hachinohe Kita-Inter Industrial Park, Aomori Prefecture|
|Manufactured products||Superfine alloy powders (magnetic powder and MIM powder*5)|
|Floor area||Approximately 6,900 m² of factory floor space on a 30,600 m² lot (the new factory floor occupies approximately 1,600 m²)|
Construction work on the Kita-Inter Plant was completed in September 2013. The plant came online in October of that year, making it Epson Atmix's second production site. Apart from the new factory for amorphous alloy powders, Epson Atmix also currently has under construction a new factory for superfine alloy powders, not including amorphous alloy powders.
The company is expanding its production capacity as needed to ensure a stable future supply of product to its customers.
Epson Atmix profile
|Name||Epson Atmix Corporation|
|Address||4-44 Kaigan, Aza, Kawaragi, Hachinohe, Aomori, Japan 039-1161|
|Beginning of operations||October 1, 1999|
|Capital||450,000,000 yen (Epson Atmix is a wholly owned subsidiary of Seiko Epson Corporation)|
|Businesses||Development, manufacture, and sales of metal alloy powders, metal injection molded parts, and synthetic quartz crystals|
For further information, please visit the Epson Atmix web site at http://www.atmix.co.jp.
*1 Market share based on 2015 annual sales (according to Epson Atmix research).
*2 Amorphous alloy powders
Ordinary alloys have a crystalline structure in which atoms are arranged regularly. In contrast, amorphous alloy powders are non-crystalline, meaning the atoms that comprise the material are not arranged in a definite, regular manner. Although solids, amorphous alloy powders, like liquids, have a structure in which atoms are densely and irregularly packed. Amorphous alloys are lightweight and have excellent electric and thermal conductivities, as well as high tensile strength. Amorphous alloy powders are amorphous alloys that have been reduced to fine particles that range from several dozen to several hundred microns in size.
*3 Epson Atmix is believed to have been the first company in the world to mass-produce these powders.
*4 Spinning water atomization process (SWAP)
SWAP was developed by Epson Atmix in 2004 to mass-produce amorphous alloy powders. Amorphous (non-crystalline) alloy powder is produced by blasting an alloy that has been melted in a high-frequency induction furnace with high-pressure gas and cooling water to create tiny droplets that are then solidified by rapidly cooling them at a rate of several tens of thousands of degrees Celsius per second. Amorphous alloy powders are technically challenging to produce in volume, but Epson Atmix has continued to accumulate expertise in this area in an effort to stabilize supply as one of the few suppliers of amorphous alloy powders.
Note: "SWAP" is a registered trademark of Epson Atmix Corporation.
*5 MIM: Metal injection molding.
A metalworking process that has the features of both injection molding and powder metallurgy. MIM enables very fine alloy powder to be used to produce parts with complex configurations that are highly accurate, dense and strong.
Epson is a global technology leader dedicated to connecting people, things and information with its original efficient, compact and precision technologies. With a lineup that ranges from inkjet printers and digital printing systems to 3LCD projectors, smart glasses, sensing systems and industrial robots, the company is focused on driving innovations and exceeding customer expectations in inkjet, visual communications, wearables and robotics.
Led by the Japan-based Seiko Epson Corporation, the Epson Group comprises nearly 72,000 employees in 93 companies around the world, and is proud of its contributions to the communities in which it operates and its ongoing efforts to reduce environmental impacts.