SMS group
Sms Anhui Anhuang Machinery 800

SMS Contracted for Closed-Die Piston Forging Line

Dec. 23, 2020
A Chinese producer, Anhui Anhuang Machinery, ordered a fully automatic 25-MN forging line with automatic walking-beam system, die-spraying unit and die holder, and SMS Elotherm induction-heating system.

Anhui Anhuang Machinery Co. Ltd., a manufacturer of leaf springs for automotive suspension systems, has ordered a fully automatic closed-die forging line from SMS group to manufacture automotive pistons. The 2,500-metric ton forging line will include SMS’ MP 2500 eccentric forging press and an SMS Elotherm ELO-FORGE L induction-heating system for heating forging blanks.

The new system will make Anhui Anhuang Machinery among the first manufacturers in China able to produce pistons for cars and trucks with a fully automated process. For SMS, this will be its first project in China for a closed-die forging line for pistons.

According to the system developer, the flash-free precision forging process will produce automotive pistons with a four-second cycle time, saving material and energy costs. Scrap-generation and finish machining steps will be minimized, as the precise amount of material required to form a piston will be used, with integrate process controls monitoring the entire process line.

‟In China, the demand for automotive parts continues to grow steadily. By investing in this integrated forging line from SMS, we can respond flexibly to increasing market requirements while at the same time guaranteeing a high level of quality for our customers,” stated Leming Huang, company president. “For us, the key arguments in favor of the fully automatic line were its high availability combined with an output capacity that is higher than with other press suppliers. In addition, SMS already has several reference plants in this sector and is also a systems supplier – that's what convinced us.”

The 800-kW, modular induction-heating system will heat blanks to 1,220°C, with a throughput of around 2 metric tons/hour and a cycle time of 2.2 seconds. Energy-efficient production will be possible in any operational state thanks to a consistently high, cos phi power factor, according to the developer, resulting in energy savings of up to 30% under production conditions.

The integrated material-feed system and fully automatic discharge unit will mean it’s possible to forge pistons right up to the last part under production conditions within the specified cycle.

The 25-MN closed-die press will have an automatic walking beam, a die spraying unit, and a die holder with quick-change system.

The press is designed with an electrohydraulic clutch-brake system and individual programmable ejectors for each forging operation.

The clutch-brake system, which is fitted with a wet multiplate clutch, will mean that no wear-related readjustments are required. No compressed air will be required to operate the brake and clutch, meaning high repeat accuracy of the switching operations and blow noise levels.

The automatic walking-beam developed by SMS has a separate servo drive with series-connected gear unit for each axis. The servo drive will ensure a smooth and finely-tuned forging sequence. The electric automatic walking-beam system will have an optimized startup and deceleration ramps, to minimize wear on the mechanical equipment and guarantee shortest cycle times.

Integrated sensor technology will monitor ram position constantly, to ensure smooth execution of the press movements.

The SMS-developed spraying manipulator will be mounted at the rear side of the press, for clear access to the die space. Spraying and drying times for each individual forging operation can be programmed individually, to reduce spraying-agent and spraying-air consumption and enhance die-maintenance efficiency.

Commissioning of the new forging line is scheduled 2Q 2022.