Light Weighting

Globally, there are increasing efforts to reduce the weight of automobiles, increasing fuel efficiency which aids in the reduction of emissions. Various grades of steel have been the predominant material used for manufacturing automobiles chassis' and body. A new generation of advanced high-strength steels (AHSS) are being developed and produced to maintain the automotive industry’s demand for steel.

Automotive manufacturers are now also working with aluminum producers to increase the percentage of aluminum used in the production of automobiles. Aluminum offers low density, excellent formability, corrosion resistance, and high strength.

THE CHALLENGE

Electric Vehicle

Although electric vehicles (EVs) produce fewer emissions or eliminate all together, their battery packs’ substantial weight reinforces the need to light weight to achieve an acceptable range for consumers.

Additional safety considerations are at play when hundreds of pounds of batteries are fastened to a vehicle. Accidents have the potential to damage the battery pack, triggering a hazardous thermal runaway. To mitigate these dangerous events, EV manufacturers must ensure the structural integrity surrounding battery modules while minimizing weight. This has created a demand for stronger metals while maintaining its formability. Plastic strain ratio (r-value) and the strain hardening exponent (n-value) are critical mechanical properties that define the formability of these products.

Our Solution

AutoXBiax

During a tensile test, these formability properties can be determined automatically using Bluehill® Universal software. To determine n-value, axial strain needs to be measured after yield and determined at or between strain values. More traditional contacting extensometers are designed to be removed during the test and may be limited in total travel. Using the latest technology, such as the Advanced Video Extensometer (AVE 2) or the AutoXBiax, strain can be measured throughout the test while ensuring the highest accuracy of results. To determine r-value, the transverse strain must also be measured, traditionally done using an additional extensometer. With either of these devices (AVE 2 or AutoXBiax), axial and transverse strain can be measured at the same time.



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