PowerMetal Technologies Inc., a leading advanced nanotechnology supplier to the sporting and consumer goods industries based in Carlsbad, California, announced today a long-term strategic alliance and an equity investment from DuPont Engineering Polymers. The strategic alliance will further strengthen the existing business relationship between the companies established in 2007.
PowerMetal’s exclusive patented process creates nanocrystalline structured alloys that are revolutionizing the sports industries, as they feature the performance benefits of steel with the weight typically associated with lighter-weight materials. The relationship with DuPont Engineering Polymers represents a strategic initiative by PowerMetal to apply its alloys to engineering polymers in new consumer markets. Although terms and financial details of the transaction were not disclosed, under the agreement, DuPont Engineering Polymers with global development, Research & Development and customer support centers will provide proprietary resin formulation and application development leadership to global customers to bring this innovative technology to market. PowerMetal will apply its nanotechnology expertise to the manufacture of extremely lightweight components that will combine the strength and stiffness of metal with the design flexibility and lightweight benefits of DuPont Engineering Polymers high-performance thermoplastics.
“The investment by DuPont Engineering Polymers is an exciting step in our company’s evolution,” said Edward Hughes, President and CEO of PowerMetal. “DuPont Engineering Polymers has built a long-standing and well-deserved reputation as a leading provider of innovative engineering polymer solutions that have impacted nearly every aspect of our society. We think this will be a very successful alliance.”
The new technology named MetaFuse™ nanometal/polymer hybrids, employs a proprietary process that precisely applies ultra high-strength nanometal to components made from DuPont Engineering Polymers to create extremely lightweight components with the strength and stiffness of metal combined with the design flexibility and lightweight benefits of high performance thermoplastics. The lightweight components can be complex shapes with the stiffness of magnesium or aluminum and at higher strengths. Nanoparticles are not created at any stage in this process.
The “MetaFuse™ technology excites product and component designers because it truly allow freedom to design with fewer limitations,” said Clive Robertson, DuPont Engineering Polymers business development manager. “Metal offers strength and high stiffness, but is limited in its ability to enable integration and to cost-effectively create complex shapes. Conversely, thermoplastic offers tremendous freedom to create shapes and to integrate functions, but it has suffered from some limitation in combining strength and stiffness. With the “MetaFuse™ technology, designers can have the best of both worlds.”
Initial target implementations include hand-held device electronics and several sporting goods markets. Under the agreement, DuPont Engineering Polymers, with global development, R&D and customer-support centers, will provide proprietary resin formulation and application development leadership to global customers to bring this innovative technology to market. PowerMetal will apply its nanotechnology expertise to the manufacture of extremely lightweight components with the strength and stiffness of metal combined with the design flexibility and lightweight benefits of DuPont Engineering Polymers high-performance thermoplastics.