Low-Pressure-Die-Casting Facility

© Fraunhofer Project Center Wolfsburg | Czichy

The LPDC facility with a hydraulically driven clamping unit and an extendable melt and warming furnace serves for the casting of metallic and non-metallic materials. In the low-pressure casting process, components can be manufactured with the highest demands on casting quality, casting component complexity, material selection and material properties. With the low-pressure-die-casting facility at the Open Hybrid LabFactory, an automated casting operation close to series production can be demonstrated. The inductive shuttle furnace enables the use of various casting materials, such as aluminum, magnesium, steel, copper, brass, and salt.

Due to the flexibility regarding production quantity, the manufacture of prototypes is just as possible as series production. A special feature is the production of hybrid cast components. In the so-called hybrid casting, various material combinations such as aluminum-fiber reinforced plastics, aluminum- steel, aluminum-aluminum, or aluminum-plastic is possible. A further focus point lies on the development of new products and the production possibilities for electric drives. Examples for such components are cast coils, stator housing, and infiltrated bundles of laminates. 

Further information to Casting-Technology.

Process features

  • Processing of: aluminum, magnesium, copper, cast iron, steel, salt mixtures
  • Direct/indirect induction heating in a low-pressure crucible furnace (up to 1.650°C heating capacity) with up to 130 kW melting capacity
  • Crucible volume: 110 l
  • Casting table clamping surface: 1,200 x 1,200 mm; max. mold height: 1,000 mm
  • Closing force: 60 t
  • Casting weight: 0.1 kg to 200 kg (Al)

Process advantages

  • Excellent part quality through slow, low-turbulence mold filling against gravity
  • Components can be fed via a riser pipe by maintaining the process pressure during solidification
  • High reproducibility of the component properties through targeted solidification of the components from top to bottom
  • Saving energy by reducing the amount of recycled material compared to gravity casting and thus increasing output
  • With the use of air or water cooling, the solidification of the melt can be controlled and the cycle time reduced
  • Flexible use of moulds and fast mould change possible, fast mould sampling and prototype production