Application of Tailored Heat Treated Blanks under Quasi Series Conditions
Tailored Heat Treated Blanks (THTB) are blanks that exhibit locally different strength specifically optimized for the succeeding forming process. The strength distribution is set by a local, short-term heat treatment modifying the mechanical properties of the material. Hence, THTB allow enhancing forming limits significantly leading to shorter and more robust manufacture process chains. In order to qualify the use of THTB under quasi series conditions, the interdependencies of the blank’s local heat treatment and the entire process chain of the car body manufacture have to be analyzed. In this respect, the impact of a short-term heat treatment on the mechanical properties of AA6181PX, a commonly used aluminum alloy in today’s car bodies, was studied. Also the influence of a short-term heat treatment on the coil lubricant, usually already applied by the material supplier, was given a closer look. Based on these experiments process restrictions for the application of THTB in an industrial automotive environment were derived and a process window for the THTB design was set up. In conclusion, strategies were defined how to enhance the found process boundaries leading to a more robust process window.
F. Micari, M. Geiger, J. Duflou, B. Shirvani, R. Clarke, R. Di Lorenzo and L. Fratini
M. Merklein and U. Vogt, "Application of Tailored Heat Treated Blanks under Quasi Series Conditions", Key Engineering Materials, Vol. 344, pp. 383-390, 2007