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Innovative solutions in metal forming

Innovation - that is a big topic at KWD. It's in the company's DNA, so to speak.

"It is no coincidence that metal has been used in the automotive industry for so long," says Dr. Jens Ullrich, Head of Development. "Metals have many fascinating properties. However, it takes a lot of know-how to bring these to bear."

The type of alloy, manufacturing process and heating must be exactly matched to one another. Ullrich cites process developments for semi-hot forming as an example of KWD's innovative strength. This is required when forming special aluminium alloys such as 7021 or 7075, which are as strong as steel but lighter.

"Working with such alloys in such a way that they meet all automotive requirements is a real challenge," emphasizes Ullrich.

Work is also being done on alternative joining processes in multi-material design. These are becoming increasingly important in vehicle construction, for example when joining a wide variety of materials in complex body assemblies in the field of body-in-white production. KWD is at the forefront of the processing of organic sheet, i.e. glass and/or carbon fibre reinforced plastics. Here, the company is working on a process for forming organic sheets while simultaneously introducing thermoplastic compounds by back pressing.

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