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Die Casting Mold Design of the Thin-walled Aluminum Case by Computational Solidiﬁcation Simulation
Young-Chan Kim1)† , Chang-Seog Kang1) , Jae-Ik Cho1) , Chang-Yeol Jeong1) , Se-Weon Choi1) and Sung-Kil Hong2)
1) Korea Institute of Industrial Technology, Gwangju, Korea 2) Chonnam National University, Gwangju, Korea
[Manuscript received September 22, 2007]
Recently, demand for the lightweight alloy in electric/electronic housings has been greatly increased. However, among the lightweight alloys, aluminum alloy thin-walled die casting is problematic because it is quite diﬃcult to achieve suﬃcient ﬂuidity and feedability to ﬁll the thin cavity as the wall thickness becomes less than 1 mm. Therefore, in this study, thin-walled die casting of aluminum (Al-Si-Cu alloy: ALDC 12) in size of notebook computer housing and thickness of 0.8 mm was investigated by solidiﬁcation simulation (MAGMA soft) and actual casting experiment (Buhler Evolution B 53D). Three diﬀerent types of gating design, ﬁnger, tangential and split type with 6 vertical runners, were simulated and the results showed that sound thin-walled die casting was possible with tangential and split type gating design because those gates allowed aluminum melt to ﬂow into the thin cavity uniformly and split type gating system was preferable gating design comparing to tangential type gating system at the point of view of soundness of casting and distortion generated after solidiﬁcation. Also, the solidiﬁcation simulation agreed well with the actual die-casting and the casting showed no casting defects and distortion. KEY WORDS: Aluminum casting alloy; Thin-wall die casting; Solidiﬁcation simulation
1. Introduction Even though silicon-containing aluminum alloys are known to be one of the most important casting alloys due to their superior casting characteristics and unique combination of mechanical and physical properties such as low density and price, moderately high strength, good castability[1,2,3,4] , manufacturing of thin-wall aluminum die casting components, less than 1.0 mm in thickness, is generally known to be very diﬃcult task to achieve suﬃcient ﬂuidity and feedability. This leads to the limited application of the aluminum alloy in the ﬁelds of materials industry for the housing of notebook computer and cellular phone, etc. High pressure die casting (HPDC) is an important process in the manufacturing of high volume and low cost components, such as automatic transmission housing and electric/electronic housing, an economical and eﬃcient method for producing components requiring low surface roughness and high dimensional accuracy . During die casting process the molten aluminum alloy is injected into the die cavity at high velocity (30-100 m/s) and under high pressure (50-80 MPa) through complex gate and runner systems . The geometric complexity of the dies strongly leads to three dimensional ﬂuid ﬂow with signiﬁcant free surface fragmentation and splashing. The ordering in which various parts of the die was ﬁlled and the positioning of the air vents are crucial to forming homogeneous casting components with minimal entrapped void. This is inﬂuenced by the design of the gating system and the geometry of the die . Therefore, the gating system has to be optimized for soundness of surface and no defect.
† Ph.D., to whom correspondence should be addressed, E-mail: email@example.com.
Therefore, in this work simulations of ﬁlling and solidiﬁcation analyses by using the MAGMAsoft were presented in order to ﬁnd the optimal die design necessary to prevent defects. Moreover the optimal die casting conditions for producing 297 mm×210 mm×0.8 mm thin-walled aluminum components (Al-Si-Cu alloy: ALDC 12) was investigated by actual casting experiment (Buhler evolution B 53D) for 2 diﬀerent gating systems: tangential and split type. 2. Experimental Numerical simulation oﬀers a powerful and cost eﬀective way to study the eﬀectiveness of diﬀerent die designs and ﬁlling processes, ultimately leading to improvements of both product quality and process productivity, including more eﬀective control of the die ﬁlling and die thermal performance. It is important for the various defects and incomplete ﬁlling phenomenon to be prevented. Thus, the time loss and economic expenses must be minimized . For acquiring optimal gating system, computational solidiﬁcation simulation by using MAGMA soft with ﬁnite volume method (FVM) is conducted. The solidiﬁcation simulation is able to calculate the mold ﬁlling, solidiﬁcation and the development of residual stresses caused during the casting process for three gating designs. The initial conditions and process parameters and the chemical compositions of casting alloy for this study are described in Tables 1 and 2. As shown in Table 1, the melt ladled was about 250 cm3 and shot sleeve ﬁlling was less than 27% for both gating designs. Also, the initial temperature of the melt was 670◦ C. Plunger diameter and active length were 70 and 250 mm, respectively. The optimum number of meshes used in simulation was about 36 and 30 million.
Sci. Fig. Vol.354 ms 54.24 No.126 cm 0.3 Al Bal.253 cm2 823.0 Mg 0.913 mm2 1077.6–12.830 ms 2.5–3.384 J.3. Technol.913 mm 0.2 m/s 9.. (b) case 2 Fig.1 Schematic illustration of ﬁnger type gating system: (a) case 1.5 Si 9.728 cm3 0.664 m/s 1077.3 Zn 1.957 cm 1. (b) case 2 .272 ms 56.2 m/s 6.35 m/s 8.596 m/s 2 2 3 Split type 258.5 Sn 0.0 Fe 0.35 m/s 8.8 Mn 0. Mater.8 mm 60 MPa 70 mm 250 mm 25.5 Ni 0.252 % 4310.830 ms 3.496 cm2 804.084 cm3 2.8 mm 60 MPa 70 mm 250 mm 26.2 Temperature distribution of ﬁnger type gating system: (a) case 1.728 cm3 Table 2 The chemical compositions of ALDC12 alloy (in wt pct) Alloy ALDC12 Cu 1.825 % 4310.517 cm2 0. 2008 Table 1 Process parameters for computational solidiﬁcation simulation Tangential type Geometry data Molten metal ladled In-gate area Projected area Characteristic wall thickness Quality Sleeve data Plunger diameter Active length Shot sleeve ﬁlling Plunge area shot sleeve volume Process data Slow shot velocity Theoretical ﬁlling time Fast shot velocity Cavity ﬁlling time Velocity at in-gate 242.
J. 3. the ﬁlling simulation was conducted for 3 diﬀerent gating designs: ﬁnger. As shown in Fig.1 Results of temperature distribution For the decision of optimal gating system. maintained continuous ﬂow during ﬁlling. 2008 385 Fig.4.2 Results of air entrapment. two cases for shape and size of runner and gate were investigated. Figure 3 shows tangential type gating designs. The tangential type gating system has no interference during ﬁlling. residual stress.24 No.4 Temperature distribution of tangential type gating system: (a) case 3. Figure 5 shows split type gating designs with 4 and 6 vertical runners.1. The back ﬂow might cause surface defects. tangential and split type. The case 6 with 6 vertical runners minimizing the distance among ingates had the eﬀect of minimizing for drop temperature. in the case 4 the cavity was ﬁlled with melt above the liquidus temperature but it occurred back ﬂow near gate because metal pressure didn’t aﬀect the casting by the short ingate length as shown in Fig. Mater. As shown in Fig. Both case 1 and 2 had the melt with temperature below liquidus after passing through the ingate and at that point the melt wasn’t able to form the uniform melt ﬂow. And ﬁnger type gating system was very diﬃcult to control approach time at ingate area. continuous and directional melt ﬂow.3 Schematic illustration of tangential type gating system: (a) case 3. First. with extended ingate and 85% length compared to the end line of casting. On the other hand. (b) case 4 Fig. the case 5 shows the melt introduced separately in cavity with thin-wall is cooled strongly. Three diﬀerent types gating design were used and the results showed that the sound thin-walled die casting was possible with tangential and split type gating design because those gates allowed aluminum melt ﬂow to into the thin-wall cavity uniformly. (b) case 4 3. the ﬁnger type gating system has the merits that are maintenance of the melt temperature and distribution of the melt. Technol. Two cases were investigated for the size and shape of the ingate.6. Figure 2 shows the temperature distribution and ﬁlling patterns. displacement and casting experiment It was found that tangential type gating system . The results of case 3 showed that the melt injected dropped the temperature at the last ﬁlling area but it didn’t separate with the main stream. The split type gating system is easy to control the approach time at ingate area and minimize the distortion of casting after trimming. Vol. Results and Discussion 3.. It may cause the misrun and defects like ﬂow line and ﬂow mark.3. Sci.
Mater. split type gating design had little air pocket.3.386 J. Vol. The defects were predicted by air entrapment. the residual stress and replacement after trimming are very important factors to its mass production.24 No. (b) case 6 Fig.5 Schematic illustration of split type gating system: (a) case 5. Since thin-walled aluminum housing fabricated in this work was only 0. On the other hand. As shown in Fig. 2008 with extended ingate and split type gating system exhibited quite uniform melt ﬂow throughout the ﬁlling Fig. the tangential type gating design showed higher back pressure (about 1 MPa) and air volume than split type. (a) tangential type gating system.. so the location of overﬂow has to be corrected.7 Results of air entrapment. (b) split type gating system of the cavity. Technol.6 Temperature distribution of split type gating system: (a) case 5.7. which might result in air porosity. Figure 8 shows the results of residual stress and replacement after .8 mm in thickness. (b) case 6 Fig. So these two gating designs were selected to study the solidiﬁcation and stress simulation. Sci.
8 mm and 0.J. Fig. (b) split type gating system Fig.3. 2008 387 trimming.7 mm for x-direction after trimming.8 Results of residual stress: (a) tangential type gating system. Technol.. Vol. (b) split type gating system Fig.10 Results of actual casting experiment: (a) tangential type gating system. Results of replacement after trimming (Fig.9 Results of replacement after trimming: (a) tangential type gating system. (b) split type gating system . Results of residual stress were both tangential and split type design. Moreover the value after trimming was nearly zero. Sci. Mater.9) showed tangential type and split type had each displacement of 0.24 No. but the cold crack was less possible to occur after solidiﬁcation. It was predicted that this displacement was caused by machining of the runner.
[4 ] John E.P.Hairy and M.Choi and C. [5 ] Matthew S. AFS. the Ohio State University. 30. 1990.. Ohio. 1997. Process. 4. 18. defects including misrun and cracks were observed in the specimens in the tangential type gating system while the split type resulted in sound casting with the highest injection speed of 4. 37. Conclusions (1) It was necessary for minimizing temperature drop.: Applied Mathematical Modeling. Gruzleski.3. [3 ] O. 180. 555. Dargusch: J. KFS.Richard: in Proceedings of the 19th International Die-Casting Congress and Exposition. 1997. of Light Metals.Hong: J.10. [8 ] J.W.. Technol. 1991. J. 1406. 91.Chellapillar: MS Thesis. 1998. (3) The results of solidiﬁcation simulation agreed very well with those of actual die casting.Cleary et al. . Mater. (2) The results of computational solidiﬁcation simulation showed that split type gating system was preferable gating design to tangential type at the point of view of ﬂow pattern and distortion generated after solidiﬁcation. Mater. [6 ] P. 2006. 217-222.Lee. [2 ] G. maintenance of continuous ﬂow during ﬁlling to control defects. NADCA.24 No. the silicon-containing aluminum casting alloy.K. 7. [9 ] S.Sigworth: AFS Trans. Closset: The Treatment of Liquid Aluminum-Silicon Alloys. 233.Madelaine-Dupuich and J.Stolarz: Mater. Technol. Bernard M.K. was cast by using a high speed die casting machine with both tangential and split type gating systems. Sci. [7 ] P. 2008 For the comparison with results of computational solidiﬁcation simulation and actual casting. Microstructure and Properties of Aluminum Alloys. ALDC 12. Sci. 1996. 13. Acknowledgements This work was supported by Korea Institute of Industrial Technology and Gwangju Metropolitan City under The Advanced Elements and Materials Industry Development Program.5 m/s. As shown in Fig.K. 2006. 1343. 1983. Forum. Vol..388 J. REFERENCES [1 ] The Japan Inst.
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