Tailored Tubes Made of Hybrid Materials for automotive Lightweight Construction

One possibility to reduce the weight of motorized vehicles is to combine materials. Another possibility is to use tubes instead of massive steel supports. For these so-called Tailored Tubes, the form of the tube is adapted to the specific loads placed on the constructional component. In a newly started research project, scientists from the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) and the Institute of Integrated Production Hannover (IPH) want to combine both of these alternatives, for the first time. By February 2016, they want to manufacture steel-aluminum-hybrid tubes, which are significantly lighter than the parts used up to now.

The scientists are facing two challenges: First, both materials must be joined so strongly, that they can be formed afterwards. Secondly, steel and aluminum have different forming characteristics.

The scientists at the LZH are presently developing a laser brazing process to join aluminum and steel with a brazing seam that is as flexible as possible. The IPH uses internal high pressure forming to give the hybrid components the right form.

The project “Internal High Pressure Forming of Laser Brazed Tailored Hybrid Tubes Made of a Steel-Aluminum-Hybrid Materials for automotive Lightweight Constructions” is supported by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.

More information (only available in German): www.ihu-tht.de