ALUMINIUM SPF

ALUMINIUM SPF

Aluminum Super Plastic Forming allows making very complex geometries parts because of an exceptional elongation of 380%.

Mechanical properties are high with a Yield strength of 346 MPa at T6 level. Moreover, our 3 000 T press with a bed size of 165’’ x 60’’ can accommodate multi-cavities tools which gives high production rates with lower cost. Verbom’s expertise in tools & dies and assembly makes us a superior integrator able to deliver sub-assembly directly on your assembly line at the best efficient total cost within the expected schedule.

In 2010, Verbom undertook research activities to develop a process for aluminum thermoforming. This technology provides designers and developers a new opportunity for the use of sheet aluminum. With an elongation rate up to 20 times higher than conventional forming methods, it allows for the manufacturing of parts with complex geometries. Successes during this stage helped us to bring to a production level this technology with a press designed and made by Verbom, dedicated specifically for this process. In addition to working with aluminum, Verbom continues to develop new techniques for super plastic forming magnesium. These lighter and stronger materials allow Verbom to continue to “push the limits” of weight reduction and formability. This process that requires a small investment in tooling as well as a short lead-time can also be adapted to high or low volume productions.

  • Produces parts with great geometric complexity
  • Exceptional elongation rate of 380%
  • Elastic limit up to 346MPA at T6
  • 3000T press with its 4,2M x 1.5M table

5000 ALLOYS – SPF

Superplastic alloys with uniaxial elongation rates up to 380% in contrast to a rate of 15% with standard methods, allowed Verbom to form large complex parts that would be impossible to form through conventional cold methods.

In addition, tooling costs could be reduced up to 10 fold. The very fine grain structure of the aluminum alloy allows it, when heated, to become superplastic and facilitate the forming of complex geometries by grain boundaries sliding. These geometries are formed by blowing a pressurized gas inside the cavity of the sealed tool. This simple tool significantly reduces the cost associated with the design and manufacture of complex conventional tools. Moreover, since no part of the tooling comes into contact with the part during forming, this type of tooling is very well suited to aesthetic “Class-A” components. This process allows aluminum to easily replace fiberglass and is compliant with EURO VI (fire, smoke, recycling) standards. 5083 SPF aluminum alloy offers a yield strength of 160 MPa and an ultimate limit of 305 MPa. Corrosion resistance and weldability are also very good that makes this alloy a good candidate for mass transit, power sport or automobile industry where mass reduction for fuel consumption is a challenge.

Almost everything made of fiberglass, thermoformed plastic, and aluminum casting can now be fabricated with our innovative process, which offers new opportunities for product designers, because our solutions help to reduce weight, and, especially, allow great engineering flexibility while respecting the environment. The chemical composition contains a high level of Magnesium and manganese which allowed for an elongation by grain boundary sliding. The grain size is lower than 7 micrometers.

5000 / 6000 ALLOYS – HSBF

High Speed Blow Forming (HSBF) can be up to 30 times faster than Super Plastic Forming (SPF). Elongation is 180% which is 10 times higher than elongation at room temperature with conventional tool & die, which allowed, as SPF, to make very complex geometries parts. 6082 HSBF aluminum alloy gives a Yield strength of 318 MPa and a Tensile strength of 346 MPA at T6 level, which makes this alloy a good candidate for mass transit, power sport or automobile industry where mass reduction for fuel consumption is a challenge. T4 level will allowed for more available elongation if substantial metal working is requested at room temperature by conventional tool & die such as hemming or flanging after the HSBF process and still provides a Yield strength over 200 MPa. The high level of silicon allowed to reach for high mechanical properties after heat treatment while Magnesium and Manganese level are kept low in order to optimize the grain deformation over grain boundary sliding mechanism as in the SPF case. Copper is completely eliminate to improve corrosion resistance. Grain size are over 30 micrometers.

The Aluminium High-Speed Blow Forming (HSBF) process was developed specifically for body panels but is very suitable for structural parts too. HSBF allows producing at a rate as high as 60 parts per hour very complex components, combining multiples arc, with radii as low as 2mm, while requiring no hand finishing operation and having Class A parts.