Copper is by far the most important metal for electric and electronic applications, with a corresponding long and successful history of PM applications involving both usage after consolidation process and of powder as such. The two most important copper powder production routes – atomization and electrolysis – allow, especially in the case of electrolytic reduction, a substantial control over shape and granulometry of particles, through careful control of process parameters. This translates into important differences in processing, dimensional and electrical properties of sintered component with the same nominal composition.
The present work looks at the influence of copper powder features such as shape, particle size distribution and specific surface on processing, dimensional, electrical and densification properties of pure copper sintered components. The relationship between powder and product properties is then discussed, establishing guidelines for optimal powder and process selection.