CASE STUDY

Distortion Optimization through Welding Simulation in Complex Special-Purpose Vehicle Assemblies

Truck
Truck (Source: fotolia)

In a joint project EDAG Engineering GmbH and Simufact have simulatively portrayed a complex special-purpose vehicle assembly on the behalf of a German commercial vehicle manufacturer - the coupling jaw cross member.

Challenges

App:Total distortion in coupling jaw cross member
Total distortion in coupling jaw cross member

In vehicle construction, welding is an established joining method for body and structural parts. Custom-designed assemblies featured in low-volume production in particular, for instance where special-purpose vehicles are concerned. These are produced in small batches, often in the single-figure range, which have a high degree of variance. 

In practice, the engineer is facing demanding and expensive challenges while manufacturing such complex assemblies:  

  • High manufacturing efforts are at the same time connected with high costs
  • Cost-intensive "trial-and-error" tests lead to high workloads and rejects
  • Residual stresses and distortions in the assembly need to be determined in elaborate prototypes
  • Assemblies of small quantities are characterized through unprofitable and lack of experience 
  • Subsequently the planning risk increases 

The project partners EDAG Engineering and Simufact joined up to minimize the efforts of manufacturing a special purpose vehicle assembly - coupling jaw cross member.

With the knowhow of simulation software, Simufact enables a proactive manufacturing of complex special purpose assemblies.  

 

Solution

Abb. Product Box Simufact Welding
Product Box Simufact Welding

Cost-intensive and technically demanding production processes can be implemented through simulation in significantly lower efforts and costs. Simufact Welding offers the optimal solution to the project question: How can welding simulation optimize distortion of a coupling jaw cross member for a heavy duty tractor? 

Our solution for the structural welding simulation exactly meets the project requirements: Simufact Welding  describes the mechanical behavior of the workpiece for example distortions and stresses due to thermal impact during welding processes. 

 

Results

The project results of this simulation demonstrate how numerical structural welding simulations can be used to predict critical deviations from the desired final dimension and to optimise results.

Read the article on how we developed a model to optimize distortion issues of the coupling jaw cross member in Simufact Welding. Furthermore, the article summarizes the simulation results. On request, we are happy to send you the printed edition of the article or you can also purchase it.*

*Due to copyright reasons, we unfortunately cannot provide a digital version. 

Distortion Optimisation through Welding Simulation

Thumb. Distortion Optimisation through Welding Simulation

Although they have already been in use for decades, welding processes are still some of the most mathematically complex methods that can be described. The reason for this is the localised heat input, with its very short heating and cooling periods and the related effects on the mechanical and metallurgical properties in the fusion zone. Thanks to the availability of high-power computers, numerical computer programs make it possible for the thermo-mechanical properties of welded structures to be reproduced in numerical simulations.

Article published in: ATZoffhighway worldwide, Issue 1/2017

Authors:
Dr.-Ing. Marius Gatzen, Simufact Engineering GmbH
Jochen Seifert, Edag Engineering Schweiz GmbH 

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