Kobe Steel Receives Prestigious ASME U3 Certification

Kobe Steel, Ltd. announces that it has received U3 certification of the ASME Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code for its pressure vessels used in isostatic presses.

The U3 certification from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) covers pressure vessels with design pressures generally above 10,000 psi (70 MPa). Kobe Steel is the first company in Asia to have received this prestigious qualification.

Pressure vessels are a key component of isostatic presses. Operating up to a maximum 140,000 psi (1 Gpa), isostatic presses produce parts from powdered materials. Typical examples of Cold Isostatic Pressing applications are turning powders into solid shapes and processing food. Hot Isostatic Pressing, at temperatures up to a maximum 3,000 degrees C., is used in treating automotive aluminum castings, manufacturing high-temperature superconductors, processing cemented carbide, and the net-shape forming of super alloys.

Kobe Steel markets its isostatic presses mainly to the powder metal and ceramics industries. With an 80 percent share of the domestic market, Kobe Steel has provided over 700 isostatic presses in Japan and overseas, mainly Asia.

The U3 certification will enable Kobe Steel to better supply the North American and European markets, as well as further solidify its position in Asia. Kobe Steel anticipates that, in supplying isostatic presses for such applications as food processing, fuel cells, and automotive aluminum castings, annual overseas sales could rise to approximately 2 billion yen.

For more information on pressure vessels, click here.

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