'Metapor' Machinable Micro-porous Aluminium (MMA) With Portec's Micro-Porous Air-Permeable Aluminium you can have even pressure vacuum for quality thermo-forming without drilling holes.
Machines like hardwood
Unlimited design intricacy
Metallic cooling properties
High precision forming
Prototype and/or production tooling
Metapor MMA is a breakthrough in material science - a new material has been custom designed specifically to enhance the performance of tools for vacuum forming.
Other applications include:
tooling for V-process sand casting,
extraction of moisture from ceramics,
vacuum holding fixtures,
creation of air bearing surfaces, etc.
More Precise Thermoforms
Metapor MMA permits more accurately finished thermoforms because the micro vents are micro close together, allowing the material to be firmly held in place over the entire tool during cooling
Fast & Low Cost Tooling
MMA machines faster than aluminium, and since it is naturally porous, there is no need to drill holes for vacuum.
More Design Intricacy
Complex shapes are possible with MMA, since the micro vents are everywhere. It is possible to produce steeper sides and intricate engraved details. MMA expands vacuum forming capability for shapes which in the past would have to be produced by injection moulding.
Blister Packaging or Structured Surfaces
MMA machines with a smooth surface finish making it suitable for certain blister packaging applications. Also, the tool can be engraved to achieve a textured surface.
Metapor MMA moulds are used on conventional thermoforming machines, and are mounted onto the work-table like any conventional tool. MMA is machined using standard equipment, and its machining properties are similar to hardwood.
Material Properties Availability Handling Instructions Mould Construction Instructions Material Safety Data Sheet
Material Properties - Grade BF 100 AL
Thermal Conductivity at 100ºC
Maximum mould temperature
Coefficient of thermal expansion 25-125ºC
Mean pore diameter
Air permeability (15mm thick material)
L/cm2/min @ 0.6 bar
Open new window and show gas flow graphs
For applications where mould temperatures are higher than 108ºC (up to 210ºC) please ask us for details of grade BF 210 AL
Slab Size(mm) Approx. Weight 500x500x10 10 lbs. 500x500x15 15 lbs. 500x500x20 19 lbs. 500x500x30 28 lbs. 500x500x40 37 lbs. 500x500x50 47 lbs. 500x500x60 56 lbs. 500x500x70 66 lbs. 500x500x80 75 lbs. 500x500x100 94 lbs. 500x500x150 140 lbs. 500x500x200 187 lbs. 500x500x250 234 lbs. 500x500x310 286 lbs. 500x500x400 (complete block) 374 lbs.
Metapor MMA is a valuable forming material, please handle with utmost care.
If only a portion of a slab is used, the remainder should be returned to its original packing in order to avoid contamination or damage. When working on MMA, the same safety precautions should be taken as when using wood (dust extraction, no coolant, etc.).
MMAs micro pores are not closed off when working the material. There is, however, a risk of contamination from cutting fluids, grease or oil. A completed mould which has been contaminated must be cleaned prior to use. Household washing-up liquids are suitable for cleaning. The simplest method is to rub the detergent in (slightly diluted) with a sponge and to rinse it off with water. The washing and rinsing process may be assisted by applying vacuum to the back of the mould. When rinsing has cleared off the foam, the washed item should be blown through with compressed air, so that any residual dirt is forced outwards from within the mould.
After a thorough washing, the mould should be dried. Depending on the size, the item should be heated to 105º C for 1 to 3 hours. This will dry the material throughout its complete thickness, allowing it to be used as a vacuum forming tool.
Mould Construction Instructions
Deep drawing tools can be built rapidly with segments of the MMA block material. Separate sections can be permanently connected in two ways:
- Screwed connection
Particle board screws are the most suitable. The pilot hole should be 1/16" smaller in diameter than the diameter of the screws (6 and 7)
- Adhesive bonding
If a complete horizontal surface is to be bonded for reasons of strength, then holes of approximately ½" diameter must be drilled from below to maintain the vacuum/pressure.
Ciba-Geigy Araldite 2014
The frame segments (8 and 9) are screwed and glued.
Mounting onto a Work Table of a Thermo Forming Device:
Unlike conventional deep drawing tools with holes, MMA moulds are porous across their entire surface. Consequently, any part of the form, where a vacuum is not required, must be sealed with pore sealant. This applies particularly in the case of front surfaces and edges (B). On the underside of the mould (A), an edging strip approximately 1" wide is also impregnated with pore sealant. This area is used for applying a seal arrangement.
Recommended pore sealant:
Loctite Threadlocker 290 in conjunction with Loctite Primer T 7471
MMA deep drawing tools should be firmly screwed to the deep drawing machines as on occasions high air pressures are used for de-moulding.
Material Safety Data Sheet
1. Product Name:
Trade name: Metapor Machinable Micro-porous Aluminium grade BF 100 AL
Description: composite material
Color: metallic grey
Properties: micro-porous, permeable to gases & fluids
Manufacturer: Portec AG, Winterthur, Switzerland
Supplier: Aegis Advanced Materials Ltd
Crundalls Farmhouse, Crundalls Lane, Bewdley, Worcs DY12 1NB, England
tel: +44-1299-404153, fax:+44-1299-401468
2. Physical Data:
Contents by weight: Aluminium Al 99.6, 65 - 90 %
Epoxy Biresin LV20, 10 - 35 %
Melting point: 660°C (Aluminium)
Boiling point: 2,270°C (Aluminium)
Decomposition temperature: > 205°C (Epoxy)
pH value: n/a
Solubility in water: insoluble
Appearance: solid (at 20°C)
Specific gravity: 1.7 (at 20°C)
3. Hazard Data:
Machining will not create a hazard. Grinding will produce a fine aluminium powder.
Protective equipment: Fire extinguisher for metal fires, foam, CO2, dry substances. Heavy respiratory protection is required for fire-fighting.
4. Health Hazard Data:
Inhalation of grinding powder: a nuisance particulate, larger than respirable size. Dust and fumes generated by overheating of the epoxy resin can cause respiratory irritation. Seek medical attention, if necessary Remove grinding powder from eyes with running water, seek medical attention.
5. Precautions for Safe Handling and Storage:
Handling: same precautions as necessary for woodworking: wear eye protection and use dust suction equipment for operations which generate airborne particles. If dust suction is not possible, wear eye and respiratory protection, avoid ignition sources and ventilate place of work.
Storage: store dry, avoid contact with fluids and exposure to high humidity.
Waste: handle aluminium powder as normal waste, or comply with local regulations.
6. Personnel Precautions:
Maximum dust concentration at work place: 6.0 mg/m3 Wear eye, respiratory, and hand protection whenever handling loose powder. Individuals suffering from aluminium allergy should avoid direct contact with the material. Handle material carefully, avoid accumulations of powder waste. Use only electrically earthed equipment, avoid static charge build-up and processes involving high energy impact.
7. Other Information:
Aegis Advanced Materials Ltd cannot be held liable regarding the application of the above mentioned product. Although we are convinced that the information given in this document is correct and reliable, the buyer of the product is held responsible for the safety before, during, and after the use of the product, and the buyer covers all risks related to the use of this product.