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Die Temperature Challenge by Ralf Kind





Die Temperature Challenge by
Article Posted: 04/20/2012
Article Views: 107
Articles Written: 21
Word Count: 455
Article Votes: 0
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Die Temperature Challenge


 
Manufacturing,Science & Technology,Automotive
Die Temperature Challenge

Lymburg Enterprises, LLC shows a nice little game at their web site. Based on the die caster’s challenge to keep the production die on a stable temperature profile this little applet simulates this doing and offers everybody the opportunity to improve his/her skills. Die caster have to deal with two sets of parameter to control the production process. The first set covers mechanical driven parameters like plunger velocities, distances and pressures. These parameters can be measured and changed relative easy. The second set contends thermal flow conditions. Hot metal is poured into the die and the die temperature increases. Starting at room temperature the die is too cold resulting in low melt temperature and casting contours not filled properly. The castings are bad. Making more castings the die heats up and the castings are in good conditions. If the die gets too hot it will break and has to be repaired costing time and money. The challenge is to find this optimal die temperature range and keep the die at this temperature profile. To do this channels are drilled into the dies to be able to send cooling water through. Die surfaces can be cooled by external spray after casting ejection. Though during die design heat flow simulations were done and the number and locations of cooling lines are placed based on the results the steady state has to be reached and kept during production. At production start the die is too cold and has to be used without water cooling. After certain castings produced the water cooling is switched on and increased little by little until the die temperature is reached. Constant checking by production personal the water flow is adjusted until a stable heat flow is accomplished. Unexpected breaks increase this doing and the amount of bad castings. It is common seeing forty to fifty “warm up shots” or duration of about an hour until the first good castings will come out of the die. In other words if the die caster has to make one thousand castings and needs fifty warm ups he produces at least five percent scrap. Warming up the die is a sensitive process the die caster needs some experience to do. Adding water too late could destroy the die, starting cooling to soon costs productivity. The last interesting aspect is the delay of heat flow as reacting of the cooling. Increasing the cooling water flow may show an instant effect close to the cooling channel but needs some time to be seen at the die surface due to the distance between cooling channel and die surface. As slower the heat transfer is as longer it will take to see a response of the die.

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