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Thixoforging of steel using ceramic tool materials

Autoren:Behrens, B.-A.; Haller, B.; Fischer, D.
Kategorie:Zeitschriften/Aufsätze (reviewed)
Veröffentlichung:Steel Research Int. 75 (2004) No. 8/9, pp. 561-568


Today thixoforming processes are mainly established in the production of parts made of aluminium alloys. Compared to high melting alloys the process temperature is low and thus the process is easier to handle. Because of process temperatures up to 1470°C thixoforming of steels demands a sophisticated process control and adapted tool materials. In this field there is still a large need for research. This paper deals with experiences made at the IFUM concerning the thixoforging of steel. The use of ceramic tool materials for thixoforging of steel is presented. For this purpose hybrid dies where a ceramic insert is prestressed with a hot working steel shrink ring as well as different stamp geometries were developed and built up. Different ceramic materials from Si3N4 to ZrSiO4 were tested and evaluated. To prevent an unwanted cooling and oxidation of the slug during its transfer, the transfer is carried out encapsulated in high temperature resistant crucibles that can provide a protective atmosphere. The suitability (e.g. thermo shock resistance) of different materials for the use as transport crucibles was also subject of this research work.

The forming experiments were carried out with the institute's hydraulic press. The process logic controller of this press offers the appropriate flexibility and various control modes needed for a sophisticated and reproducible filling of the die. In this way the die filling process of different steels can be tested.