$42 million forging press for aerospace

Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology

ISSN: 0002-2667

Article publication date: 1 April 2000




(2000), "$42 million forging press for aerospace", Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology, Vol. 72 No. 2. https://doi.org/10.1108/aeat.2000.12772baf.009



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited

$42 million forging press for aerospace

$42 million forging press for aerospace

Keywords: Carpenter Technology, Forging, Components, Aerospace industry

Carpenter Technology Corp., reports that its new 4,500-ton hydraulic forging press, which started production in December 1999, will give the company significant improvements in forged product consistency, quality, productivity and capability.

The Reading, Pennsylvania, specialty metals producer said it will focus on, but not limit production of the new press to, aerospace components, including rotating quality material for engine discs and shafts.

Investing more than $42 million dollars in new equipment, Carpenter will use the press and associated equipment also to make alloys for the power generation market, stainless steels and other alloys for oil exploration.

"We are making a tremendous leap in capability with this new press", offered Tom Zogas, manager, Forge Finish Technical Services: We have talked with forgers and aerospace engine manufacturers, among others, to ascertain what they need now and beyond in critical alloys. And we have established fulfillment of those needs as our goal.

The new Mannesmann Demag press will enable Carpenter to make more, higher quality and richly alloyed products that must meet the most stringent requirements. Design of the press has been based on the need to obtain consistent quality, with minimal variation from one forged section to the next of similar size, configuration and composition.

This is an open-die, two-column, oil-hydraulic pulldown press with dual integrated manipulators. In contrast to the conventional four-column pushdown forging press, the new Carpenter pulldown unit has all of its hydraulics and actuation below ground level. That design, Carpenter notes, makes the press more rigid, stable and reliable, allowing better size control when forging. It is also safer because all the oil, moving machinery and pressure seals are below ground.

The new press, with its high level of automation, will help Carpenter to exercise tighter control over the microstructure of its forged shapes. This will be key to variation reduction, and will improve productivity substantially.

With the high tonnage capability of the new press and other design features, Carpenter figures it will be able to produce some cutting edge aerospace alloys that it could not make before, while improving the quality of its entire forged product line.

Support equipment, to be installed next Spring, will enhance the capabilities of the press. Ten furnaces will be close to the press to help in reducing handling time. Four of them will have a reducing atmosphere capability to permit the high quality levels necessary with some nickel-base alloys.

A highly automated stiff-arm crane, capable of lifting 18 tons and travelling up to 800fpm, will allow fast, consistent transfer of heated stock from the furnace to the press. A large mobile charger, also with an 18-ton lift capacity, will have a 46-in. jaw opening to hold large shapes. An unusual control room chair, looking like something out of Star Trek, will be used to operate all functions of the press.

When fully operational, the press will make, large bar and billet for customers, billet for use on Carpenter cold rolling mills and wide slab for the production of strip at Carpenter. The new press will be able to forge finish pieces, such as oil field drill collars, up to 40’ft long.

The new machine complements Carpenter's current forging equipment which includes a 3,000-ton hydraulic forging press, an SX65 rotary forge and an SX32 rotary forge.

Details available from Carpenter Specialty Alloys: Tel: +1-800-654-6543 or see Carpenter's Web Site at www.cartech.com (Canadian readers can obtain additional information from Carpenter's Toronto Service Center. Tel: +1-800-268-4740).

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