Liz Nickels delves into the world of Internet business funding sites to see which innovative metallurgy projects have captured the interest of investors.

A number of hopeful start ups have followed the trend to secure funding for their project by asking for money on sites such as kickstarter.com and indiegogo.com. If they succeed, it could lead to the development of an innovative new technology. While some have fallen by the wayside, others have had much more luck.

Sinter success

One major Kickstarter success is Sinterhard, a project featuring a range of plastic filaments containing metal or ceramic powder that can be used in filament 3D printers to make industrial metal or ceramic parts. Launched in April 2015, the campaign received US$16,383 from 84 backers based on a US$15,000 goal.

Backers of the technology would receive one pound of 3.0 or 1.75 mm Sinterhard metal filled thermoplastic filament, filled with 316 stainless steel or aluminum for only a US$50 pledge, while for those rich enough to pledge US$4000, the company promised to dedicate one filament extruder and one technician to make filament of the investor's choosing, with US$1000 of the pledge budgeted for raw and shipping costs of the investor's choosing, US$1000 allocated to overheads and miscellaneous project costs and 100 hours of a technician at US$20/hour.

Metal Powder Report spoke to Bill Kovacs, former president of Orange Technology Corporation and a specialist in vacuum furnace technology, who developed the technology.

This article appeared in the Sept/Oct issue of Metal Powder Report.

Download now