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Collaborative Research Examples for Project Proposal
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Higher Tooling Life in Metal Casting of Aluminium


Abstract:
The proposed project addresses the importance of ever more demanding customers‘ demands in the automotive industry for higher tooling life period of aluminium die casting. Aluminium is becoming the main material of choice for European OEMs and casting companies must provide more castings per tool, decreased consumption of the lubricant and at the same time ensuring repeatability and meeting the customers‘ demands (0 PPM).

Description of Project Idea:
The project proposes finding an advanced solution that would greatly ENHANCE TOOLING LIFE in the European ALUMINIUM CASTING industry via improved tool materials, improved tool coatings, improvement of the tool lubrication process optimization of thermal management of tools – reducing stress in the tool, etc. Project builds upon numerous and important projects from the field that were funded under FP6 and especially FP7 programs. Due to its specifics project can provide solutions for larger or smaller SME aluminium foundries and can involve bigger or smaller tool suppliers. OEMs via their Tier-1 suppliers today demand zero-defect products; Modern aluminium die-castings are built into ICE (internal-combustion engine) and ICE sub-systems (pumps), steering systems (electric power steering components), safety components (brake systems) and form basis of future electric drivetrains (housings etc). Aluminium die-castings today must be without bigger (leaks, cracks) or smaller defects (burrs) and must be of geometrical shape within micro-tolerances. This makes the importance of die-casting tools that must ensure meeting of these criteria and at the same time repeatability (upwards of 100.000 “shots”) ever more visible. Defect-free production at the same time lowers energy output and waste, ensuring the meeting of ever stringent ecological criteria.

 

Consortium of partners, already involved:
X Company: A major Turkish automotive component supplier to some important European Tier-1 and OEMs. X Company has some established contacts with universities and R&D centers successful in H2020 projects and already cooperates in two H2020 projects (as coordinator in one of them). X Company manufactures aluminium die-castings covering all the main processes: high-pressure die casting, machining, and quality control. X Company has two plants in Turkey and a fully equipped research institute together with an in-house tool-shop. X company’s castings are currently focused on two(highly demanding) fields: a) internal combustion engine components (water pumps) b) steering system components (pinions, columns, pumps, el. motor housings). In the future we plan to focus also on electric drivetrain components.
Partners sought to complete the consortium:
- die-casting tool manufacturer
- coating/lubricant manufacturer
- vacuum system manufacturer
- casting mold cooling system manufacturer
- R&D institution that has knowledge in high pressure die-casting
- in case more industrial cases are needed to ensure EU-wide representation: another aluminium die casting company


Topics:
Integration of unconventional technologies for multi-material processing into manufacturing systems
Affordable weight reduction of high-volume vehicles and components taking into account the entire life-cycle
Novel design and predictive maintenance technologies for increased operating life of production systems


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