Abstract The production of 5–10 μm fused particles and agglomerates occurs when metal powders in hydrocarbon solvents are exposed to high-intensity ultrasound. The principle mechanism of particle fusion is believed to be interparticle collision caused by the rapid movement of particles propelled by shock waves generated at cavitation sites. An energy-dispersive X-ray (EDX) study of the agglomerates produced during the sonication of mixed-metal powders in decane indicates that not only are the metal particles fused by the action of ultrasound but that intermetallic coatings are also developed. By examination of mixed-metal systems (Ni/Co and Cu/Mo) with substantially different tribological characteristics, it has been determined that the coatings are generated by both adhesive wear and direct impact. The mechanisms of ultrasound-induced coatings are discussed.