FOCUSING ON THE CHARACTERISTICS OF MATERIALS USED IN COMPONENTS
What sort of condition is a material in; how does it behave; how resilient is it?
Highly experienced materials specialists analyze and validate the quality of materials and components used in series production. Working on behalf of OEMs and their suppliers, they investigate a hugely diverse range of situations in which materials and components are subject to stress.
Employing appropriate environmental simulation techniques, specialists from a variety of disciplines assess the quality of the material or of the surface finish, or they evaluate mechanical properties, the quality of the joining technology, joinability, fatigue behavior and corrosion resistance.
Independent assessment and advice of the highest standard is essential if automotive products are to be used safely in series production.
MATERIAL & SUPPLIER QUALIFICATION
Because one material isn't the same as another
When it's a matter of consistently robust long-term behavior and compliance with all the relevant requirements and parameters, it's the quality of the materials and components used which is of vital importance. Data calculated by an independent institution can provide information about component safety behavior and can ensure that the materials selected will not result in high series production reject ratios – thus providing stability for the entire production line.more ...
Safety for function and design – right from the start
From an early stage in its development, every single component must undergo a comprehensive test phase so as to highlight essential safety aspects and to guarantee its subsequent functional reliability. Sophisticated test rigs and appropriate static and dynamic simulated loads are used to check and carefully evaluate under realistic conditions both the design of the various individual components and the ways they will be used.
It is important that each of the test procedures used is able to answer the customer's specific questions. Have real-life conditions been simulated sufficiently accurately? What test rig features will have a direct effect on the results? Whether it's the introduction of pneumatically or hydraulically synchronized forces, selective rigidity due to the components' mounts or failure assessment – each and every component and process will be comprehensively and carefully checked. Component testing is accompanied by wide-ranging analyses. The mechanical materials tests are complemented by state-of-the-art metallurgical, chemical and physical analyses. This facilitates a full and thorough quality evaluation that can provide highly reliable data to confirm component functionality and design.
MATERIALOGRAPHY – METALLOGRAPHY
Key features can't hide from the SEM
Precise material characterization will determine a material's specific composition and microstructure. Samples are painstakingly checked using scanning electron microscopy, light microscopy and various chemical analysis methods.
Which is the most suitable material for a particular product? Does the structure of a raw material, semi-finished product or component comply with the standard? Does it deviate from the norms? Material characterization delivers the decisive basic facts. Physical and chemical measurements are taken of the surfaces and cross-sections of materials; these measurements determine the material's parameters – as required by companies for a specific manufacturing process. Failure analysis highlights the full extent of the problem to not only identify the cause of the failure but also to suggest possible ways of rectifying it.
DETERMINING MATERIAL DATA
You can count on us
Plasticity, creep characteristics under temperature, corrosion behavior, flow patterns – to see how a material will behave, a variety of characteristics, anisotropy or solidification can all be determined. By using mathematical material models of appropriate simulations, for example, the data from experimental methods can also help us make predictions about the behavior of complex deformation processes.
Depending on the task and what is required of the material, producing the challenging material data models demands a high degree of professional expertise and a comprehensive set of empirical values. This is the only way for suitable material tests to be defined and adequate test schedules to be drawn up.
Günter Bergmann is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and a member of the Board of Directors. He studied mechanical engineering at Stuttgart University, focusing mainly on automotive engineering and on the science of the strength of materials. Working for many years in various international automotive industry companies has given him a wealth of invaluable experience of the sector. Bergmann is responsible for ensuring that a wide range of product innovations are successfully developed and introduced into series production.