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Current Trends of Hydroforming Process Into Automotive Body Structure and Chassis Applications

[+] Author Affiliations
Ramakrishna Koganti, Jason Balzer

Ford Motor Company, Dearborn, MI

Klaus Hertell

Schuler Hydroforming Inc., Canton, MI

Paper No. IMECE2007-43379, pp. 33-38; 6 pages
doi:10.1115/IMECE2007-43379
From:
  • ASME 2007 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 3: Design and Manufacturing
  • Seattle, Washington, USA, November 11–15, 2007
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4297-5 | eISBN: 0-7918-3812-9
  • Copyright © 2007 by Ford Motor Company

abstract

Recent low emission, lightweight, safety requirements, automotive manufacturers are implementing lighter and stronger materials and new manufacturing processes into body structural components. Typical widely used forming process in automotive body structures is stamping process. Other forming processes currently used in body structural applications are hydroforming, Rollforming and hot stamping processes. Initially, hydroforming process was used for chassis applications. Few applications of chassis are cross members, engine cradle, instrument panel (IP) beams, and bumper beams. Recently, a few automotive manufacturers are already implemented the hydroforming process into front end structures. Hydroform process gives more part consolidation, and perhaps even weight reduction. However, depending on applications some brackets may be needed to attach other components. Some of the issues related to bracket attachments can be avoided in the design phase. Audi A2, and Chrysler Pacifica have implemented roof rails in the body structures arena. Latest developments are even pushing the hydroforming process into High Strength Steels arena. Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky implemented Dual Phase 600 material on the chassis rails. In this paper, current trends of hydroforming process with advanced high strength steels (AHSS) will be discussed. Hydroforming process involves, bending, preforming (low pressure), and final forming (high pressure) with mechanical properties of DP780 material at various stages of the hydroforming process will be discussed.

Copyright © 2007 by Ford Motor Company

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