In the middle of May the European Powder Metallurgy Association (EPMA) held its Quality for Powder Metallurgy (PM) Seminar in Seville. The 2-day technical seminar focused on a number of aspects relating to quality techniques and technology for PM structural parts.
The NH Viapol in the picturesque city of Seville played host to over 30 attendees that came from across the PM supply chain to enhance their understanding of a range of quality management subjects from Advanced Product Quality Planning through to Techniques for Continuous Improvement and Basic Metrology Characteristics and Measurement Methods. The content was enhanced with a number of industry related case studies that made for some thought provoking discussions during the breaks.
The sessions were devised to cover some of the areas that end user customers are becoming involved with in the hope that upskilling the supply chain companies will create competitive advantage when negotiating new components. An example of this was the lecture on ‘New Mobility, Automated Driving, New Business Models – Challenges for Warranty and Reliably Management’. The presentation examined the increased expectation of warranty periods for components in the automotive sector and now in the present day, how OEMs have an expectation of elongated component warranty agreements from 24 months through to 72+ months.
The lecture delved into what techniques the supply chain employ and how they can adapt to meet the challenges set out by the OEM customers, such as the overall companies organisation and internal processes need to be up-to-date. Robust contract management and methodical reporting on tooling and production capacities and adhering to quality management initiatives, such as reliability analysis & prognosis during service life are just some of the areas delivered by Dr.-Ing. Andreas Braasch, Institut für Qualitäts und Zuverlässigkeitsmanagement GmbH (IQZ).
The final day of the seminar was rounded off with an industrial tour to First Quantum Minerals, Copper Mining, Extraction and Refining facility, where participants were provided a 45-minute tour of the facility to see how the copper minerals were extracted from the quarry and the processes used in the refining operations, post extraction.