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34, No 1 (2012) 11-17

Tribology in Industry


Wear Behavior of Uncoated and Coated Tools under
Complex Loading Conditions

M. Wielanda, M. Merklein a
aChair of Manufacturing Technology, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Friedrich-Alexander - University
Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany

Keywords: ABSTRACT
Hot stamping In automotive industry crash relevant structures of the body in white
Sheet-bulk metal forming are manufactured using the direct hot stamping process. Due to the
AlCrN-coating high temperature difference between the hot blank and the cold tool
Adhesive Wear surfaces and the relative movement between the blank and the tool
surfaces during the forming operation, high thermal and mechanical
Corresponding author: loads are applied on the tool leading to excessive wear in terms of
adhesion on the tool surfaces. One possibility to reduce wear of hot
M. Merklein stamping tools is the application of tool coating systems. In the scope
Chair of Manufacturing Technology, of this work uncoated and coated tools are characterized under
Department of Mechanical Engineering, complex loading conditions with respect to adhesive layer build-up.
Friedrich-Alexander - University Erlangen-
Nuremberg, Germany © 2012 Published by Faculty of Engineering

1. INTRODUCTION during the forming operation, high thermal and
mechanical loads are applied on the tool.
Nowadays light weight design of the body in
white is not only achieved by a substitution of
conventional steel grades with light weight
materials such as aluminum and magnesium
alloys but also by manufacturing structural
components out of high strength steel grades.
Due to the increase of materials tensile strength a
reduction of the sheet thickness of the component
is possible attended by a weight reduction with
steady or even increased components strength Fig. 1. Schematic figure of the direct hot stamping
[1]. These steel grades can be processed by direct process.
hot stamping which can be described as forming
and quenching in one process step (Fig. 1). Due to Excessive wear can be observed on the tools used
the high temperature difference between the hot for direct hot stamping as a result of these load
blank and the cold tool surfaces and the relative cases. To avoid decarburization and scaling during
movement between the blank and the tool surfaces austenitization, semi-finished products with an


4 µm three-dimensionally with confocal microscopy. Compared to sheet metal and an increase of layer thickness leading to a forming the sheet-bulk metal forming process has degradation of weldability. applied by Physical Vapour Deposition (PVD) on dimensionally using tactile stylus measurement and the tool material and has a thickness of 3. forming a cold bulk metal forming operation is But an increase in dwell time also causes a applied on sheet metal to form complex geometries homogenizaiton of the aluminum silicon layer out of the sheet as under investigation for attended by a coarsening of the layer surface synchronizer rings in [5]. Due to the diffusion the characteristics of higher contact pressures and of iron into the coating hard intermetallic Fe-Al- varying stress conditions on the tools surfaces. In its initial state the semi-finished 12 . 1100 °C [6]. Tribology in Industry Vol. uncoated and coated tools is analyzed two. leading to an increase in wear on the leading to higher normal loads and thus to faster tool surfaces in terms of grooves and adhesive initiation of adhesive wear.05. pre-coating. a tool was designed melting of the aluminum silicon coating at a based on a sheet-bulk metal forming process to temperature of about 620 °C [7]. This is a coating systems have a higher hardness and a better result of temperature driven diffusion processes resistance against oxidation and wear [3.2367 in its uncoated The normally used steel grade within direct hot condition and with applied AlCrN-monolayer stamping is a 22MnB5 with an aluminum silicon coating was chosen for these experiments. This pre. This coating system is both. product has a fine grain ferritic-pearlitic coating also supports the occurrence of wear in microstructure with a good formability and a yield terms of adhesive layer build-up by an increasing and tensile strength of about 400 MPa and 600 MPa number of drawn components leading to respectively. By sheet-bulk metal depending on the dwell time in the furnace [8]. temperature above the specific Ac3 temperature of about 850 °C and is required to achieve the Due to their excellent properties. Furthermore the coating system were characterized showing no possibility of reducing wear by using AlCrN-tool degradation of these properties when used on coating systems will be shown. AlCrN. In [9-11] both. 4]. A maximum heating rate of 12 K/s manganese steel is investigated under process to 15 K/s should not be exceeded to avoid relevant conditions. tools for the direct hot stamping process. M. The increase in yield and tensile degradation of material flow and workpiece strength up to 1100 MPa and 1600 MPa is achieved accuracy. No 1 (2012) 11-17 aluminum silicon pre-coating are used. The heat treatment is carried out at a ensure the components quality [2]. of the iron from the base material into the aluminum silicon layer. 34. an AlCrN-monolayer tool coating uncoated and AlCrN-coated tools. Merklein. hardness of up to 3200 HV0. subsequent quenching operation of the austenitized blank in the tool higher components strength can be Due to its properties like a maximum service achieved as by utilizing strain hardening of the cold temperature of up to 1100 °C and a hardness of forming operation. Adhesive wear on system is investigated. Time consuming and expensive rework by a heat treatment and a subsequent quenching has to be done to remove the layer build-up and to operation. Different zones enhance adhesive layer build-up due to its more in the aluminum silicon coating develop complex loading conditions. M. Si emerge. INVESTIGATED WORKPIECE AND TOOL both uncoated and coated tools are used. increasing the melting Within the scope of this work adhesive wear point of the coating to a temperature of up to behavior of aluminum silicon pre-coated boron. To investigate wear behaviour on the tool surfaces 2. The tests are conducted using 3200 HV 0. AlCrN-tool cooling rate of the hot blank has to exceed 27 K/s to coating systems came into consideration to be guarantee a fully martensitic grain structure. such as a high microstructural phase transformation to austenite. COATING MATERIALS Representing standard steel used for warm forming tools the steel grade 1. comparing worn and unworn die surfaces the wear thermal and tribological properties of this evolution can be determined.05 and a maximum Within the subsequent quenching operation the temperature of service of up to 1100 °C. Via measured by ball grinding tests. phase changes during the heat treatment. Thus. Also applied on tools used for direct hot stamping. Wieland. the pre-coating of the blank passes through several Compared to conventional Ti-based coatings. Combined with a layer build-up on the tool.

Calculated contact pressure pc on the lower is compared by tactile stylus measurements and sheet-bulk metal forming die. 2. such as upsetting. RESULTS AND DISCUSION inner die radius followed by a immediate decrease in the transition to the inner surface.25 mm.max = 752 MPa is located at the runout of the 4. To over s = 2.5 mm. 34. The liftable lower die relieves the removal of the workpiece after forming and quenching in its upper position by providing enough clearance. Merklein. leading to the initiation of boron manganese steel sheets with a thickness adhesive layer build-up on the tool surfaces. confocal microscopy after every 10 strokes. the numerical model is homogenous temperature distribution for the calibrated.5 mm. In Fig. on sheet metal semi-finished products [12].5 mm both. By using this new sheet-bulk metal forming test This is a result of material flow into the inner area setup high contact pressures are applied on the of the die where it is pressed into a smaller 13 . 3 the workpiece geometry to s = 3.5 mm. No 1 (2012) 11-17 3. Within this tool a A new experimental sheet-bulk metal forming blank with an initial sheet thickness of tool was developed for wear experiments to s0 = 4. M. Wear evolution of both tool sets Fig. It can be noticed that the highest contact pressure of pc. three blanks of on initial sheet calculate these high contact pressures the thickness of s = 1. an outer diameter of douter = 39 mm achieve complex load conditions on the tool and an inner diameter of dinner = 13 mm is surfaces.5 mm are stacked to reach a experiment is also simulated using the finite blank thickness of s0 = 4. a material flow out of this punch force is shown. EXPERIMENTAL PROCEDURE processes. A dwell time of element software ABAQUS 6. area into the inner and outer cavity is obtained. Wieland.9 EF1. 2. Thus. Thereby a maximum punch force of austenitization of the blank at an 328 kN in the experiments is reached. 3. Workpiece geometry after forming and sheet-bulk metal forming tool. Via tγ = 6 minutes was chosen due to the higher comparison of the punch force of the experiment thickness of the blank to guarantee a and the calculation. The experiments were carried out using uncoated and coated dies with a total amount of 50 strokes each. To in sufficient accordance with the calculated achieve a thinning in the middle area of the maximum punch force of 330 kN. Sheet-bulk metal forming can be formed to the geometry shown in Fig. Tribology in Industry Vol. Due to the lack of aluminum silicon pre-coated tool surfaces. which is austenitization temperature of Tγ = 950 °C. The pre-hole of the initial blank is used for centering the hot sheet stack onto a spring seated pin. described as application of bulk metal forming Fig. the distribution of the contact pressure pc along the upper and lower die have a circular radius of die geometry at the moment of the maximum r = 9. M.

Evolution of roughness on the uncoated lower sheet-bulk metal forming die. 5. lower die is shown in Fig. The roughness nearly doubles and keeps decrease on the inner and outer surface and the at a constant value of about 1 µm on the inner slight increase in arithmetic mean roughness Ra and outer surface. 4. Fig. The roughness material flows into a greater volume with the evolution of the inner surface. In this area the tactile stylus measurements. 34. It is obvious that on all three measurement Fig. Evolution of roughness on the AlCrN-monolayer coated lower sheet-bulk metal forming die. On the outer die surface no contact to 50 strokes each. After every 10 strokes the pressure is applied due to the absence of contact arithmetic mean roughness Ra is determined by between tool and workpiece. No 1 (2012) 11-17 volume of the cavity leading to this peak in With the new developed sheet bulk metal contact pressure. 5 shows the roughness evolution of the points an increase in arithmetic mean AlCrN-coated lower sheet-bulk metal forming roughness Ra after the first 10 strokes can be die. 14 . Merklein. the outer surface effect of a spreading of the material until a and the surface on the radius of the uncoated contact with the tool wall is achieved. Furthermore the roughness on the coated tool after the first 10 high scattering of the arithmetic mean strokes can be determined. First to notice is the slight roughness seen. M. In the direction of the outer die forming tool wear experiments with uncoated radius a constant decrease in contact pressure and AlCrN-coated dies were carried out with up can be seen. roughness Ra are obtained during 50 strokes. But this increase in roughness Ra can be interpreted as some debris roughness is less compared to the coated die. On which matures on the surface during the the radius similar values of the arithmetic mean experiments. a trend of a further increase of roughness can Like on the uncoated die also an increase in be noticed within 50 strokes. Fig. Tribology in Industry Vol. Wieland. On the surface on the radius on the radius after the application of the coating. 4. M.

8. In Fig. M. only slight circular adhesion marks can be seen. 7 microscope images of the AlCrN- monolayer coated tool after 10 and 50 strokes are shown. In Fig. of the inner radius circular cracks develop This build-up is protruded. Crack formation of the aluminum silicon inner radius. the outer surface small adhesions can be noticed in terms of darker marks. 34. 6 the surface of the uncoated die along the radius after 50 strokes is compared to its initial condition. Adhesive layer build-up on the AlCrN- monolayer coated lower sheet-bulk metal forming die. Tribology in Industry Vol. 15 . In the area of the highest contact pressure pc. In the area of the inner surface on the lower die the material is only touching the die surface with marginal relative movement so that only little aluminum silicon coating of the sheet is sheared off. caused by adhesion of during the forming operation showing the glossy the aluminum silicon coating of the sheet. This means that also in this area the workpiece had contact with the die surface leading to the measurable roughness increase. 7. The adherence of aluminum silicon coating is Fig. Also on inside of the aluminum silicon coating. M. On the outer die radius first changes of the surface can be noticed after 10 strokes in terms of adhesion of the aluminum silicon coating. In Fig. On the inner and outer surfaces of coating on the workpiece. In the area Noticeable is debris adhered on the outer die radius. points microscope images of the die surfaces were taken. Adhesive layer build-up on the uncoated lower not only noticeable on the die surfaces but also sheet-bulk metal forming die. on the workpieces. Fig. This adhesion shows a glossy but rough structure under the microscope. As seen for the uncoated die also the coated one show only slight circular adhesion marks on the Fig. No 1 (2012) 11-17 To get further information of the reason for the the die nearly no adhesion of the aluminum roughness increase on the different measurement silicon coating can be noticed after 50 strokes. Wieland. This adhesion initiates further layer build-up which can be noticed as darker debris along the outer radius. 8 SEM-images of the coating of the workpiece are shown. Merklein. at the inner die radius. 6.

The aluminum silicon layer build up on the uncoated Additionally the uncoated and coated die surface is not only more protruded but also surfaces were measured three-dimensionally by more homogenous over the surface. This can be also stated in the increase of surface In the outer area the circular cracks switch to roughness Sa of 5. CONCLUSION sheet-bulk metal forming die. This can be also noticed in the area of averages 5741. By ongoing strokes the outer radius based on the same stress more and more adhesion develops on both die conditions. Thus. Also the arises from tangential tensile stresses on the material volume on both surfaces increases to material in that area leading to a spreading of 24574. A material volume on the uncoated coating cracking up the surface. In the inner area no circular cracks surfaces leading to accumulations of build-up. Towards the surface of 6943.8 mm³/m² can be determined bottom of the radius the amount of these cracks whereas on the coated one the material volume decreases. of adhered aluminum silicon on the die surfaces Therefore a new test setup was developed 16 .36 µm for the uncoated and 1. rises higher than on the uncoated surface. To Within the scope of this work adhesion give a first qualitative statement of the amount evolution on tool surfaces is examined. 10.32 µm on the uncoated surface radial cracks towards the outer border. 17191.6 mm³/m². Tribology in Industry Vol. Adhesive layer build-up on the uncoated lower 5. 9. This build-up adhesion and ensure components quality. By processing aluminum silicon pre-coated The comparison of the surfaces after 20 strokes semi-finished products within the hot stamping shows nearly the same surface roughness Sa of process automotive industry has to deal with about 1. No 1 (2012) 11-17 These circular cracks go around the whole the material volume of the layer build-up is surface as a result of radial tensile stresses in the calculated. Fig. 9 and 10). But it can be seen that there is tool surfaces. all surfaces are aligned with a second-degree polynomial to adjust the curvature of the radius (Figs. Fig. Merklein.28 µm for wear in terms of adhesive layer build-up on the the coated die.5 mm³/m² for the coated one. M. Expansive and time consuming slightly more build-up on the surface of the rework has to be done on the tools to remove coated die as on the uncoated one. develop due to the compression of the material.5 mm³/m² for the uncoated surface and the workpiece material.35 µm on the coated surface. M. This and 3. Wieland. 34. confocal microscopy after 20 and 50 strokes and analyzed. Adhesive layer build-up on the AlCrN- monolayer coated lower sheet-bulk metal forming die.

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