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Periodic Reporting for period 1 - Rib-ON (Innovative Stamping Die for Aluminium Ribs Hot Stamping)


The overall aim of the “Rib-On” project is to develop and manufacture an innovative stamping die based on a modular/reconfigurable and low cost approach to successfully produce different outer external wing rib models using new high performance aluminium alloys and...


The overall aim of the “Rib-On” project is to develop and manufacture an innovative stamping die based on a modular/reconfigurable and low cost approach to successfully produce different outer external wing rib models using new high performance aluminium alloys and tailored die steel and coating solutions. The die will serve to manufacture different shape/length aluminium ribs of FTB2 demonstrator ready to fly.

The following challenges must be overcome for the success of the project:
-Hot forming of aluminium is not a widespread technology
-Die users allow little play to improvement by material selection.
-Modular/reconfigurable dies are infrequent.
-Integrating heat treatment and stamping in a single operation allows reducing costs but is difficult to achieve.

These four points lead to the most remarkable fields of expertise that gather at Rib-ON project. The consortium has wide experience in relation to the expected impacts. BATZ is a stamping die manufacturer for automotive and engine part manufacturer for aerospace industries and IK4-AZTERLAN has an extensive experience of more than 30 years in metallurgy.

As for the operative approach, Rib-ON proposes to face the development of the new aluminium wing rib hot stamping die in the following sequence:

1. Functional requirements of the die will be set at first (WP1).
2. Once the die requirements are set, its concept design will be developed (WP2):
2.1. Processing window of the aluminium sheet must be defined.
2.2. Selection of the most advantageous die steel and coating will be performed.
2.3. Shapes of the blank and the forming surface of the die will be designed for each wing rib by simulation. Die cooling channel design will be simultaneous.
2.4. Modular die concept will be developed and prepared for subsequent detailed design.
3. Detailed design of the die and the corresponding manufacturing plan will be carried out (WP3&4)
4. The die will be set at TM\'s facilities for homologation (WP5)

Work performed

The Project is in its initial stages. Main work performed has been the following:
- WP1 (Specificatioins of the hot stamping die for wing ribs): The overall results are a set of specification which are enough for advancing significantly in the die design. Despite some detail definition features are still awaiting concretion from the TM, they are not relevant enough at this stage to further disturb more the timing at this stage.
- WP2 (Conceptual design of the stamping die): The economic approach to the cost-effectiveness has been focused on the cost of the die. Tool material selection criteria for the most favourable “material cost-die wear” has been developed based on SRV testing, reaching the best option for RIB-ON. The lower and upper die basement design will be completed with the incorporation of a cooling strategy than prevents the excessive heating of the die during its use in press for rib manufacturing. The rest of the elements included in the stamping die are being designed while the final rib geometry is being defined, because the final geometry is still not definitive.

Final results

The Aluminium Sc alloy hot stamping technologies for the wing ribs will suppose an advance with respect to the currently used in:
• An increase in the formability of high strength aluminium alloys without the drawback of grain growth during the heating stage of the hot stamping process

The development of modular/reconfigurable dies for hot stamping wing ribs will introduce an advance in current state of the art since:
• The concept of a modular die, which is compatible with an internal cooling system, is an innovative industrial approach.
• This die design strategy allows a reduction in the investment in dies which is not currently exploited in industry.

Stamping die materials:
• A tool steel selection tailored to the selected aluminium hot stamping process, trading-off thermal conductivity, surface and bulk hardness, toughness and cost.

Stamping die coatings:
• A coating selection tailored to the specific tribology of the aluminium hot stamping, trading-off hardness, friction coefficient, wear and galling resistance and cost.

O1–Design and manufacture a cost effective modular hot stamping die in which modularity concept and cooling channels are integrated together.
O2-Development and validation of in-die heat treatment technique for aluminium hot stamping.
O3-Design and build a hot stamping aluminium stamping die, whose material and coating are optimized for the application.
O4-Produce several different aluminium wing rib references by hot stamping in a single die operation.
O5-Manufacture several wing rib demonstrators by hot stamping of new aluminium alloys satisfying the high geometrical, mechanical and metallurgical requirements of these structural components.

Website & more info

More info: