Simulating Rolling

Management Summary

Walzprozess (Quelle: Mannstaed)

The application module Simufact Forming Rolling simulates rolling processes of all kinds.

Slabbing, profile rolling, tube rolling, wire rolling or roll forming, calibrating or straightening, irrespective of hot or cold temperatures: With Simufact Forming rolling processes of all dimensions and across the whole range of rolling products can be simulated.

With every bid, customers expect delivery time, quality, costs, product innovation, and service, in addition to pogram-specific demands. Those who best meet these demands win more programs.



Take advantage of Simufact Forming for your rolling processes to get a competitive advantage and a technological lead, with advantages such as:

  • Faster and risk-managed offers based on simulation-assisted feasibility studies
  • Reduced development costs through shorter development times with fewer trial runs – shorter delivery times for the customer
  • Reduced testing costs
  • Higher process stability and quality, e.g. by optimizing the respective pass schedules
  • Reduced production costs by choosing sensible pass sequences and by optimum tuning of the single process stages (number of passes)
  • Lower fixed costs through higher machinery utilization
  • Less waste and reworking costs
  • Predictions of component properties or rolled stock
  • Broaden the product range
  • Develop new cmanufacturing concepts (e.g. changing from machining to forming, gear thread rolling)
  • Virtual design of processes without wasting real rolling mill capacity
  • Further training of staff for a more comprehensive understanding of the process (“Seeing the inside” of the machine or the production process)

The application module Simufact Forming Rolling is especially well suited to chained process simulations that include rolling steps.


Modeling Entire Process Chains

With Simufact Forming you can model the entire process chain of the rolling material. From the first heat treatment to the cutting/sawing of the material, rolling, controlled cooling, working on the final geometry (straightening and calibrating) and the last heat treatment – everything can be simulated. The extremely realistic results take all manufacturing conditions into account.

By using the existing interfaces, relevant forming results can be imported from Simufact.forming to Simufact.welding. This product can simulate and analyze the effects of welding (residual stresses, distortions, etc.) on the components. In the subsequent structural analysis, Simufact.forming can test the properties of the virtually manufactured component.

A schematic illustration of a typical process sequence, here: profile rolling. With the courteous permission of Mannstaedt GmbH.


Process chain of roll forming (forming, welding, structural analysis)


Application spectrum Simufact Forming Rolling


  • Flat rolling
  • Longitudinal profile rolling
  • Profile rolling of raw parts (forge rolling, cross rolling)
  • Roll forming
  • Rolling of wires and tubes
  • Profile rolling of piece goods (gear tooth rolling)
  • Flow forming
  • cross roll piercing
  • Thread rolling with flat dies or roller dies
  • Special processes (pilger rolling)


The material databank includes about 750 materials with all relevant ferrous, nonferrous light and heavy metal materials and material groups.

  • All common steels and steel alloys
  • Super alloys based on nickel or titanium
  • Aluminum wrought alloys
  • Nonferrous heavy metals such as copper and their alloys such as brass and bronze

In addition, the user can input his own material data or import external material data via standard interfaces.

Boundary Conditions

For a realistic simulation of rolling processes, Simufact Forming takes into account the typical boundary conditions:

  • Modeling of dragged and driving rollers, transport and guide rollers, guiding grooves as well as stripper rollers
  • Flexible kinematic definitions with any boundary conditions: Differing coordinate systems, translations and rotations, including definition of spring
  • Realistic process modeling, with rigid body motions, ensures the simulation of component movements are very close to reality
  • Consideration of roller stand and roller elasiticity as well asbearing clearance



Simulation videos Rolling

Rolling in sheet metal forming


Cross roll piercing in the manufacturing of tubes (complete view)


Cross roll piercing in the manufacturing of tubes (cross-section)


Forge rolling, taking into account roller stand stiffness


Optimization Targets

Reach your optimization targets with Simufact Forming Rolling

  • Verify the manufacturability / feasibility of rolling processes (feasibility studies)
  • Avoid rolling defects(wings, cracks, improper groove fill)
  • Analysis of force, torque and energy demands
  • Examine and optimize the rolling strategy in respect to the optimum utilization of rolling passes
  • Check gripping conditions laid out in process design
  • Choose the right pass schedule
  • Avoid or reduce distortions or warping of the rolled material
  • Verify the number of passes
  • Verify pass reduction (decrease thickness)
  • Optimize tools in respect to their shape, material and coating to increase durability

Functional Highlights

Utilize the functional advantages of Simufact Forming Rolling

  • No limit to the number of rollers or roller stands, motion degrees of freedom and boundary conditions for the rollers
  • Easy to operate with project templates and databanks that offer parameter definitions close to production
  • Import roller geometries (the entire rolling mill) from 2D-DXF data (automatic expansion to 3D geometries, defining the offset between roller stands, automatic definition of the rotation axis)
  • Flexible kinematic definitions with any boundary conditions: differing coordinate systems, translations and rotations, including definitions of spring (simulation of fixed and floating mandrels)
  • Simulation of roller stand stiffness, taking into account bearing clearance in addition or as an alternative to roller elasticity (realistic calculation of roller deflection)
  • Comprehensively coupled elasto-plastic material definition as a prerequisite for highly precise calculations of the stresses in the rolled material. This allows the precise simulation of residual stress, leading to a correct simulation of springback and bending effects
  • Unique process modeling with rigid body motions, ensures the simulation of workpiece movements very close to reality
  • Precise contact calculation of the finite element solver ensures realistic transport of the rolled material
  • Open kinematic concepts for individual adaption
  • Modeling of microstructure and phase transitions
  • Modeling of blowhole and pore compaction
  • Optional consideration of kinematic hardening based on the Chaboche model
  • Simulation of the anisotropic effects, an important criterion for sheet metal forming
  • Precise results through the stringent use of high-quality elements (hexahedrons)
  • Automatic mesh generation from metal sheet unrolling with automatic mesh refining, based on bending radii; primarily for roll forming
  • Automatic sequencing of different forming operations
  • Fast 3D simulation through parallel computing with multiprocessor work stations and cluster systems
  • Especially designed meshing strategies for thin sheets

References Rolling

A great number of users, among them leading machinery manufacturers, trust Simufact’s simulation technology. Among others, the following companies apply Simufact Forming Rolling:

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