MONTREAL—PyroGenesis Canada Inc., a cleantech firm that has focused on the development and sale of plasma waste-to-energy systems and plasma torch products, has announced it will be diving into the fast-growing additive manufacturing industry as well.
After filing a provisional patent for its Plasma Atomization Process earlier this year, PyroGenesis now says it will begin producing specialty powders for 3D printing. The process produces “highly flowable” and very pure spherical metallic powders, ideal for 3D printing, the company said.
“While delivering the first of ten Plasma Atomization Systems to a client, an opportunity arose to test certain parameters which PyroGenesis identified as having the potential of improving both the production rate and purity of the powders,” Peter Pascali, president and CEO of PyroGenesis, said. “The decision was taken, with the customer, to strategically delay delivering the first system to allow for this testing. This strategic delay not only resulted in a patent application by PyroGenesis, but paved the way for PyroGenesis to consider producing powder for 3D printing on its own.”
The company said it has already identified customers interested in buying powders, though not in the quantity that would justify the purchase of a dedicated system. The company estimates it could generate more than $10 million in profit per year from each system’s powder sales. As a result, the company is in the process of securing funds to finance the venture.
The Montreal-based company said with an investment of $1.7 million it could be producing powders within nine months.