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SSM Processing Facility

The Naval Materials Research Laboratory (NMRL), Ambernath, has set up Real-Time Semi Soild Metal Processing FacilityControlled Pressure Die Casting Machine for Semi-Solid Metal (SSM) Processing. It is a new generation state-of-the-art machine, designed to give extremely high injection and consolidation forces of 1050 kN, suitable for new materials and alloys. The machine can be used to produce aluminium parts weighing up to 5 kg. The system processing incorporates elements of both casting and forging for the manufacture of near-net-shape discrete parts. The process capitalises on thixotropy, a physical state wherein a solid material behaves like a fluid when a shear force is applied.

The SSM process requires a non-dendritic feedstock, which can be produced by applying mechanical or electro-mechanical stirring during alloy solidification at a controlled rate, or from fine-grained materials produced by powder metallurgy or spray forming. This feedstock, usually in billet form, is heated to a temperature between its solidus and liquidus and made into dies to make near-net-shape parts.

Vector Network Analyser

Vector Network AnalyserNMRL has also installed a Vector Network Analyser. The instrument is used to characterise active and passive components such as amplifiers, mixers, filters, couplers, and attenuators, etc. It measures in the frequency range 2-18 GHz and temperature range 30-150C. The properties, which can be measured are: S-parameters, magnitude and phase, standing wave ratio, insertion loss or gain, attenuation, group delay, return loss, reflection co-efficient and gain compression.