Lightweight Design worldwide

, Volume 11, Issue 5, pp 30–35 | Cite as

Products + Processes

Products + Processes


Fiber Winding Machine from Serial Production

The custom machine manufacturer Roth has developed a new machine for manual production cells in fiber winding technology. The Type 1 Eco machine is the standardized variant of the most successful customized fiber winding portal machine on the market from the manufacturer based in Steffenberg (Germany). It is suitable for small series and for manual production, for example for applications with low product complexity or for getting started with fiber winding technology. For Roth it is the start of series production of fiber winding machines. The machine has a modular concept with up to four spindles. A maximum of four winding axes and two length variants of 4000 and 10,000 mm can be configured. Each spindle has a separate drive for easy and cost-effective retrofitting. |

Fraunhofer LBF

Calculation Concept for Fiber Orientation

The Fraunhofer Institute for Structural Durability and System Reliability (LBF) has developed a method that allows the fiber orientation of short glass fiber-reinforced injection molded parts to be taken into account in a phase in which no components such as prototypes are yet available. With the help of the phenomenological calculation concept, the direction-dependent component behavior can be estimated for mold elements and the component can be designed to withstand the load. In contrast to fully integrative approaches, the allocation of fiber orientation in the process developed by Fraunhofer LBF is not based on finite elements, but on form elements or significant areas. These can be ribs, domes or flat areas, for example. Depending on the level of detail required, the new process can be regarded as an independent solution for component design or as an upstream supplement to integrative simulation. |


Multi-material Fiber Patch Storage for Aviation

Cevotec is developing a production system of the Samba Multi type, with which material mixes such as adhesive foils, glass fiber and carbon fiber layers can be processed and deposited automatically within a single line. These different materials are used to improve the adhesion and processing of carbon fiber material and the commonly used aluminum honeycomb sandwich cores, which is particularly challenging in the manufacture of complex sandwich components. The production system features a parallel feeder for different materials to be processed in one system and can place them precisely on three-dimensional sandwich cores or molding tools. By mounting the fiber patch placement unit on a linear axis, the concept also enables the production of particularly long and wide components for the aviation and aerospace industry. According to the company, automated multi-material deposition for complex sandwich components leads to shorter processing times. In addition, material savings of 20 to 50 % are possible. |

HAWK Göttingen

Lightweight Chassis for Commercial Vehicles

Engineers of the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Technology at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts (HAWK) in Göttingen (Germany) have reportedly developed the lightest chassis of its kind for commercial vehicles. The construction was based on bionic principles and the study of load-bearing structures. Designed under the direction of Prof. Dr. Christopher Frey, the lightweight chassis weighs less than 350 kg and is expected to save up to 50 kg in weight compared to a conventional chassis. The delicate chassis made of steel tension and compression rods relies on low-cost fine-grained structural steels and does not require the use of aluminum or CFRP. In addition to the cost advantage, according to the researchers, the lower weight speaks in favor of the lightweight chassis. It pays directly into the driving resistance and can thus save about 80 l of diesel per 100,000 km. However, it can also be used in an electrically driven commercial vehicle. The suspension axle has already been registered for international patents. |


Bonding Metals without Solvents

Delo has developed two new solvent-free activators that accelerate the bonding of metal adhesives. With the low-viscosity Delo-Quick 5910 and the higher-viscosity Delo-Quick 5975, activator and adhesive can be processed wet-in-wet without flash-off and components can be added directly after dosing the activator. They can be processed immediately, which shortens the cycle time in the production process. Since no solvent vapors are produced, exhaust systems and industrial safety precautions can be dispensed with in production. In addition, the activators improve the strength of bonds of metals such as stainless steel or aluminum after exposure to moisture. Both activators can be applied by rotor spray, continuous piston doser, hose pinch valve, brush coating or spray coating. |


Testing Fiber Composites Using Shearography

SKZ is testing the use of lock-in shearography for the industrial testing of components made of fiber-reinforced plastics. To this end, the scientists are transferring the lock-in technique, a method that has already been perfected in thermography, to shearography. The component is continuously imaged during a periodic load. The measured data is then specially evaluated with regard to the excitation frequency. In addition to an increase in the signal-to-noise ratio, the depth of defects can also be measured. In the past, this method was limited to laboratory use due to long computing times. In order to also enable its use in industrial component testing, SKZ has optimized image processing and accelerated it significantly by using parallel algorithms. |


Quick Tool Change for Small Lot Sizes

The plastics machinery manufacturer Engel Austria presented for the first time a fully automated solution for the very fast change of tool inserts. This should make it possible to produce a large number of variants economically, even in quantities of less than 1000 units, which is a particular challenge in injection molding. The system solution now presented enables a fully automated change of tool inserts in just one minute. The E-motion 170/120-TL injection molding machine is equipped with a tool with Braunform's patented quick-change mechanism. In order to clearly demonstrate the potential of the new solution, the two geometrically different components of a caliper gauge were produced in rapid succession. After the injection molding process, the robot first removes the last component produced, then changes the gripper and replaces the mold inserts. |

Faist Chemtec

Lightweight Acoustic Insulation Material

Sika subsidiary Faist Chemtec has developed an ultra-light multilayer material for damping structure-borne noise in vehicle interiors and bodies. The self-adhesive, aluminum-laminated bitumen foam is 80 % lighter than previously used insulating materials such as magnetic bitumen foils or sprayable acoustic compounds. According to the manufacturer, it is also acoustically more powerful than the heavier conventional products. The material is suitable for use in vehicle floors, doors, roofs, side walls, and end walls of vehicles. According to the manufacturer, a medium-sized limousine uses approximately 2 m² of the insulation material. The use of the new material would result in potential savings of up to 7 kg per vehicle. The first series applications can be found in models from BMW and Daimler. |


Blind Riveting Tools with Tensile Force up to 23 kN

KVT has launched four new blind riveting tools with the Proset-XT series. The hydropneumatic models are characterized by a high force-to-weight ratio, simple operation and optimized ergonomics. The model XT1 is suitable for production line environments, the XT2 is particularly suitable for setting breakstem rivets. The Proset XT3 model processes breakstem rivets, lockbolts and sealing plugs in various sizes and, thanks to its 26 mm stroke, allows longer rivets such as monobolt and interlock to be set in a single operation. The XT4 model offers the highest tractive force in its class at 23 kN. The model, weighing 2 kg, is equipped with a high-strength piston rod and hydraulic damping and is suitable for processing Avdelok, Maxlok and Avtainer striker bolts. |

TU Dresden

Series Production of Fiber-reinforced Magnesium

A consortium led by TU Dresden has developed a plant for the industry-oriented production of particle- and fiber-reinforced magnesium parts. In cooperation with Coperion, Druckguss Service Deutschland, GK Concept, Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht, Neue Materialien Fürth, Reiloy and Volkswagen, researchers from the Institute for Lightweight Engineering and Polymer Technology (ILK) at the TU Dresden have developed the plant technology with which particle and fiber reinforcements can be incorporated into magnesium for the first time. The plant compensates for the usual process fluctuations of thixomolding plants. The system combines the continuous preparation process without interruption with a compact die casting unit and allows reproducible high-quality component production. With the newly developed systems, magnesium components can be produced in cycle times of less than one minute. |

Keller Lufttechnik

Condition Monitoring of Dedusting Systems

Under the name Premos, Keller Lufttechnik offers automatic remote monitoring of its dedusting systems for customer use. Worn or dirty components, which threaten the functionality of a plant, can be detected early via condition monitoring, thus avoiding unscheduled machine downtimes. The required data box and sensors can be retrofitted independently of the device manufacturer; new systems can be equipped with them ex works. The sensors register the resistances of the main and secondary filter, the vibrations of the fan, the air volume flow, the compressed air consumption or the current consumption at various points in the extraction system. The measured data from the sensors is then sent via cellular network to a web-based data platform. Data acquisition and transmission can take place independently of the machine control. The system works with all types of extraction systems, for example dry, wet, electric, emulsion or oil mist separators. |


Fire Retardant Polymer Semi-finished Products for Railway Technology

Igus is introducing its polymer material Iglidur RW370 as a semi-finished product for the production of special solutions in railway technology. The material, which complies with the fire protection standard EN 45545, was previously only offered in the form of plain bearings. The semi-finished products are available as plates and round bars in various sizes and thicknesses. The lubricant and maintenance-free semi-finished products are used on the bogie or in couplings of trains and trams, among other applications. They allow the carriage to slide on the bogie and to swivel the coupling in the event of lateral misalignment of the rails or cornering. |


PA 6.6 Alternative

Akro-Plastic has modified a PA 6 to achieve comparable properties to a PA 6.6. The compound called Akromid B+ has a 50 % glass fiber content and the same strength as a conditioned PA 6.6 GF50, whose breaking stress is 115 MPa. The stiffness of the conditioned material is also almost on the level of PA 6.6, according to the company. The price is to be between PA 6.6 and PA 6. The portfolio currently comprises 30 to 50 % glass fiber-reinforced compounds; a type with 60 % glass fibers is to follow shortly. Polyamide 6.6 compounds are only available to a limited extent in the market due to years of raw material shortages, and prices are increasing continuously. |

Woojin Plaimm

Injection Molding Machine with Three-platen Clamping Unit

South Korean company Woojin Plaimm has developed a new range of fully hydraulic injection molding machines with a three-platen clamping unit. The machines of the HD-A5 series will initially be offered with clamping forces of 1200, 1600, 2200, 3000 and 4000 kN. This is primarily designed for the production of precision-molded parts, as required, for example, in the automotive or electrical industries and in numerous other areas of application for technical parts. The machines are also suitable for use with special injection molding processes, such as gas or water injection technology. The series was completely designed in the Austrian development center of the Korean machine manufacturer. The market launch is planned for the first quarter of 2019. |


Steel Grade for Light Connecting Rods

Schmolz-und-Bickenbach subsidiary Ascometal has developed Splitasco XS, a new variant of its Splitasco HC steel grade, which is suitable for the production of standard C70 connecting rods in lightweight design. The steel grade exhibits no plastic deformation even under the highest compressive load and is highly resistant to vibration. Compared to standard materials in the connecting rod area such as the C70, the new steel grade increases the compressive yield strength by 110 % and fatigue strength by more than 60 %. The material is a bainitic steel grade, i.e. the mechanical properties of the manufactured components are achieved without quenching, thus avoiding their distortion. In addition, the company has optimized its chemical composition to achieve high cooling speeds. |


Structural Adhesive for Rail Vehicles

Gluetec has developed a structural adhesive specially tailored to the requirements of railway applications. The so-called Weldyx Master is suitable for the structural, high-strength, flexible and highly resistant bonding of metals, composites and plastics. It is compatible with all common substrates of the railway industry. The 2-component methyl methacrylate adhesive in a mixing ratio of 10:1 is available in processing times of 5 and 15 min. Bonding of aluminum and stainless steel is possible without the use of a primer. Due to its flexibility, materials with different coefficients of thermal expansion can also be glued structurally. Compared to its predecessor Weldyx, Weldyx Master has a lower tendency to shrink and a slightly longer reaction time, which enables the user to bond precisely in a longer time window. The adhesive is hazard level HL 3 certified. |

Atlas Copco

Manual Application of High Quality Adhesives

Atlas Copco has developed a hand applicator for even higher quality manual adhesive application. The ergonomically optimized Bonder X is suitable for applications in car body manufacture, for seam sealing or for reworking. The tool is optimally balanced and lighter than its predecessor versions. In particular, the handle has a much more ergonomic design. An additional support handle and a pneumatic trigger require less pressure. The application, which is easier to control, improves the quality of the adhesive bead and prevents operator fatigue. The valve technology has also been revised so that the unwelcome so-called hammerhead at the beginning of the adhesive bead is reduced. For good accessibility and less strain on the operator's wrist, the material hose sits against the applicator on a rotating joint. The connection for the material feed can be fixed in three positions at the top, bottom and side. |


Composite Material for Commercial Vehicle Side Panels

With its so-called X-treme products, Lamilux offers carbon or glass fiber-reinforced plastics for highly stressed side walls, roofs and floors of commercial vehicles, caravans and buses. The reinforcing glass or carbon fibers in the material are aligned uniaxially, bi-axially or multi-axially as required. The materials absorb the load and stress forces acting on the sandwich elements, which also results in increased torsional stiffness. Compared to steel or aluminum, the carbon fiber-reinforced plastic is up to 50 % lighter and has three to four times the tensile strength. The low thermal expansion of the composite material also makes it possible to produce large components without long-term distortions and bubbles. In addition, the materials are highly impact resistant. |

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© Springer Fachmedien Wiesbaden GmbH, part of Springer Nature 2018

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