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6K Additive to double powder manufacturing capacity

This expansion will increase their facility by 35,000 square feet and will add as many as 35 new employees

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6K Additive, a division of 6K and a leader in the sustainable production of engineered materials for additive manufacturing and lithium-ion batteries, produced from its UniMelt plasma technology, has revealed its plans to significantly increase production capacity for additive manufacturing powders. The plan includes 20,000 square-feet of additional powder production capacity with four new UniMelt microwave plasma systems, as well as the addition of a 15,000 square-foot material feedstock preparation building. Over the last 12 months, 6K Additive has seen rapid growth in the demand for their nickel, titanium, and refractory powders, and this capacity increase will help the company meet its customers’ needs for the coming 12-36 months.

“Global unrest has shed a major spotlight on our nation’s supply chain vulnerability for critical materials,” said Frank Roberts, president of 6K Additive. “This, in combination with our consistent product quality, sustainability benefits, and the fact that we are a domestic supplier, have contributed to increased commercial activity with key strategic customers. This expansion will help us meet customer demands in the coming years and ensure efficiencies in current and future operations.”

6K Additive to double powder manufacturing capacity. Increasing its facility by 35,000 square feet and adding as many as 35 new employees. Adding the feedstock preparation facility to the Burgettstown, Pennsylvania 45-acre campus provides 6K Additive with vertical integration of feedstock sizing for nickel and titanium in the same location. This will help to streamline operations, provide faster delivery, and ultimately provide control over the quality of the produced powder. The Burgettstown plant currently produces a full range of powders including nickel 718 and 625, titanium-64, stainless steel and copper, and has the capabilities to produce aluminum alloys. 6K Additive also runs two dedicated UniMelt production systems co-located in the company’s parent headquarters in North Andover, Massachusetts – producing tungsten, rhenium, and niobium-based alloys for hypersonic, defense, and rocket applications.

“The ability to meet the demands of our customers in both quality and delivery is paramount for our organization. The addition of a feedstock preparation facility and the added UniMelt production capacity will help to create a consistent operational flow to meet this demand. However, I am equally excited to be able to bring on more talent to the organization with as many as 35 additional employees planned. It’s great for our organization as well as the tri-state area,” said Eric Martin, chief operating officer of 6K Additive.

6K Additive’s mission is to provide a solution for global decarbonization by producing performance materials that are critical to production in aerospace, defense, medical, and industrial markets. The company recently released results from a life cycle assessment conducted by Foresight Management comparing the environmental impact of 6K’s UniMelt microwave plasma technology to current atomization technologies in the production of metal powders. The results showed upwards of a 91% reduction in energy use and a 91.5% reduction in carbon emissions when using the 6K UniMelt process.

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Edward Wakefield

Edward is a freelance writer and additive manufacturing enthusiast looking to make AM more accessible and understandable.

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