WW Kolloquium: Dr. Malte Lenz & Dr. Michael Mark Refractory metals in medical and industry applications: A scientific and sustainable approach to product development

Date: 18. June 2024Time: 16:00 – 17:30Location: H14 / Zoom

Dr. Malte Lenz / Dr. Michael Mark
Product Development, Business Division Refractory Metals, Plansee SE

“Refractory metals in medical & industry applications - a scientific and sustainable approach to product development”

Refractory metals like Molybdenum and Tungsten exhibit a unique set of properties: a high melting point, outstanding mechanical strength, good electrical conductivity, and excellent corrosion resistance. These characteristics make them the materials of choice for demanding industrial, electronic and medical applications. In today's world a new dimension is added to innovation: the concept of sustainability. We present examples of a scientific and sustainable approach to product development based on the 3R principles: Reduce – Reuse -Recycle. This approach is especially important for energy-intensive materials like refractory metals as they are inextricably linked to a substantial carbon footprint.
In the application field of medical technology, we demonstrate a conceptual approach to re-design, re-work and ultimately re-use X-ray rotating anodes for CT devices. Due to harsh operating conditions, the focal tracks of X-ray anodes are damaged in application and limit the service life. The main body and cooling elements of the anode, however, are typically left intact. We discuss the technological and scientific building blocks like material and surface design, in-situ testing X-ray anodes, dose modelling and production technologies that are needed to transform a linear product life into a circular one.
In a second example we are going to present a new application for Plansee’s first-ever product produced since 1921: Tungsten wire. Originally used as a filament for incandescent light bulbs, modern high strength W-based fine wires are utilized for cutting wafers from silicon ingots for solar cell production. Compared to lighting filaments, this application demands a completely different material property profile and thus, an extensive material and process development. This application showcases the challenges of tailoring materials properties via grain-boundary strengthening and dispersion strengthening while walking the fine line between extreme tensile strengths and processability. In this application too, we strive towards reducing the initial material usage and explore possibilities to re-coat and re-use Tungsten cutting wires.

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Event Details

18. June 2024
16:00 – 17:30

H14 / Zoom

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