NADCA Video News & Information
The material presented in this video are some highlights from NADCA’s online webinar - Product Design for Die Casting. This initial webinar in the series will provide an introduction and overview of the die casting process.
Die casting is obviously a liquid metal casting process. So, what does that mean? That means we are going to use a liquid metal as a feed material. That means we are going to go through a solidification process from liquid to solid. And the goal is to produce a net shape, i.e., we cast it and basically ship it. Or near-net shape where we cast it and have to do a minimal amount of finishing operation to the component before we ship it to the customer. Obviously, the value is added during the casting process. We want to get as close to the final shape as possible. That is the whole point of the casting process. And therefore, we want to minimize any expensive finishing operation we have to do to the part. And we are going to produce these from aluminum, magnesium and zinc alloys. And with the die casting, we are going to inject the liquid metal. We are not pouring as in many casting processes. We are going to use a hydraulically activated ram and inject the liquid metal into reusable steel dies. So, we are going to have steel dies and we are going to reuse those dies time after time. We are going to inject it at very high speeds. So, normally the speed at which the liquid metal enters the die is somewhere between 100 to 200 feet per second. So, to put that into perspective; that's about half a football field in second. And we are going to purposefully break the liquid metal up into a spray as it enters the cavity. When you go to die casting school and when you learn how produce a die and inject the metal, we look at purposefully breaking the liquid metal up into a spray. That allows us to fill the cavity very quickly and allows us to get really good surface quality of the casting and and to fill the extremities of the cavity. Once the cavity is filled, we are going to continue to press on the liquid metal as it is solidifying and cooling. We want to try and push more liquid metal into the cavity for two reasons: to shrink down any entrapped gas and to feed certification shrinkage. We'll talk about more of these things in a bit more detail in part there when we talk about minimization of defects. How much pressure do we apply? We are applying really high pressures. Probably 4,000 PSI on the low end up to 20,000 PSI. 10,000 would be more typical. With some of the high-integrity processes, maybe as high as 20,000 PSI. So, we are really pushing hard on the metal. The real critical 3 part of this is the reusable steel dies, high-speed injection and high pressure once the castings are solidified. So, those are the 3 traits of the high pressure die casting process.
For information on purchasing a downloadable copy of this webinar in its entirety, please visit: http://www.diecasting.org/store/detail.aspx?id=WEB327
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