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ECOHYB — Result In Brief

Project ID: 508452
Funded under: FP6-SME
Country: Austria

Safer cutting of hybrid metals

To achieve the optimum technical characteristics and reduce weight and costs in motor vehicle parts, combinations of materials of different nature are being used. European partners took on the challenge of developing a prototype machine for cutting hybrid metals with accuracy, quality and safety.
Safer cutting of hybrid metals
Over the last years, the automotive industry has seen an increase in the use of hybrid metals to construct moving parts. Magnesium-aluminum (Mg-AI) and magnesium sintered metal (MgSint) hybrid constructions are advantageous due to their low weight and high strength and wear characteristics.

However, such hybrid materials present with increased difficulties in machining and require specially designed cutting tools and lubricants. The development of an experimental machine prototype, capable of safe machining of magnesium (Mg)-based hybrid materials was the subject of the EU-funded ‘Ecological and economical machining of magnesium based hybrid materials’ (Ecohyb) project. The main aim was to make the machining of Mg-based hybrid materials effective, safe and environmentally friendly.

Various parameters of the experimental machine prototype were optimised including removal of cutting chips and avoidance of vibrations. Additionally, the tools, lubrication and cutting strategy were investigated.

Due to hazards and risks of machining Mg-based hybrid components, several safety aspects had to be considered in order to minimise possible accidents. Guidelines and rules were, therefore, prepared to train workers of the potential hazards when machining Mg-based hybrid parts.

Successful testing of the Ecohyb prototype machine ensured its future industrial implementation in machining of Mg-based hybrid parts. At the same time the project contributed towards making magnesium composite production an effective, safe and environmentally friendly process.

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