Development of novel light weight profiles for automotive industries by roll forming high strength tailor rolled blanks
Today, automotive companies are facing the challenge to satisfy increasing demands for safety, environment protection and comfort features while the car’s weight shall be decreased at the same time. Therefore, different lightweight construction concepts have been searched for and applied by the automotive and transportation industries lately. The focus was hereby mainly set on the body in white design. The development of tailor rolled blanks (i.e. sheets with variable thickness distribution in rolling direction) offers the possibility to design the parts with load dependent sheet thicknesses which in consequence seem to be appropriate to meet the above mentioned aims. However, flexible, cost effective, and highly efficient production techniques to process these types of sheets are still missing.
Within the HIPAT research project new light weight components are to be developed by roll forming tailor rolled blanks into beam like structure components (Figure 1).
Roll forming is widely known as a very efficient production technology since it guarantees high output quantities by relatively low investment at the same time. Moreover, the possibility to integrate further functions (i.e. stiffer joining areas) is given. Hereby cost reduction is possible since fewer parts are needed.
First, a Finite-Element-Analysis of different roll form tool kit concepts is accomplished to obtain a fundamental understanding of the forming process. Also, the necessary kinematics is to be investigated when roll forming tailor rolled blanks (Figure 2).