SEED rheocasting

An innovative process for the production of high integrity die casting parts

How it works

The car industry has been facing some important challenges during the last years, but the battle is not over. CO2 emissions have to be reduced to minimise the environmental impact of the car industry, and one way to reach the required emission levels is to significantly reduce the car mass by integrating aluminium components. To this end, high integrity casting has to be used on a large scale to provide new advanced aluminium components to the industry.

This is here that the SEED / Swirled Equilibrium Enthalpy Device comes into play. Semi‑solid forming of aluminium has proven to be an effective solution for the production of high integrity parts. The SEED operates by using a liquid‑based method (rheocasting) of producing high solid fraction feedstock for semi‑solid casting.

The principle is based on achieving rapid and controlled thermal equilibrium between a metallic crucible and the bulk of molten aluminium by the selection of simple process parameters such as pouring temperature and stirring duration.

The SEED technology has proven itself on a wide variety of aluminium foundry alloys and has even been demonstrated on wrought compositions (6xxx). Shot weights and dimensions can be readily adjusted (demonstrated up to 54 kg), and the process can be retrofitted to both horizontal and vertical die/squeeze casting machines.

Key features

Casting Quality Improvement

  • Production of high integrity parts suitable for structural applications.
  • T5 and T6 heat-treatable (blister free) and weldable parts.
  • Near net shape, thick and thin walled castings that require less machining.
  • Geometrical flexibility.
  • Enhanced mechanical properties.

 Productivity Improvement

  • Faster cycle rate.
  • Reduced total heat load on tooling, resulting in longer die life.
  • Returns can be fully reused.
  • Fully automated machine that can be used with both horizontal and vertical die/squeeze casting machines.