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Ein Greifer für Heißes: Formvariable Handhabung schmiedewarmer Bauteile

A gripper for hot things: variable shape handling of hot hybrid forging components

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Annealing semi-finished product before forming (Photo:ELSA)
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Pin gripper with bearing bush in the handle (Photo:ELSA)

If extremely hot components of varying geometries are gripped with just one handling system, considerable technical challenges arise. The Institute of Assembly Technology (match) of Leibniz University Hannover develops high-temperature grippers.

The match is researching shape-variable grippers for handling hybrid, hot-forged components as part of the Collaborative Research Center (SFB) 1153 "Process chain for manufacturing hybrid high-performance components by tailored forming". Here, the adaptability of shape-variable grippers to a wide variety of geometries is to be transferred to the forging sector. This is desirable because the components undergo significant geometric changes and specially adapted grippers are required for handling, which can only be used for the respective geometry.

The problem is that commercially available variable-shape grippers are usually made of polymer materials. The material gives the grippers elastic behavior, allowing them to adapt to different geometries. However, polymer materials are severely limited by their operating temperatures and can be used at a maximum of up to 300 °C. Hot-forged components, however, reach temperatures of up to 1200 °C. To close the gap between form variability and high temperatures, researchers at match have developed new technologies. More details can be found in the new phi article at: