Shandong Weiqiao Lightweight Materials enters new business area

by Hans Diederichs

With a 28 MN direct-indirect extrusion and tube press

Shandong Weiqiao Light Metal Co. Ltd., China, a company of Shandong Weiqiao Pioneering Group, has placed an order with SMS group for the supply of a 28 MN direct-indirect extrusion and tube press. By making this investment in a multifunctional light-alloy extrusion press, the Chinese company is entering the new business area for extruded aluminium products. The Shandong Weiqiao’s first extrusion press will be erected at the company's location in Zouping City, Shandong Province, China. The product range will include profiles and thin-walled pipes made of aluminium and aluminium alloys, primarily for use in the automotive sector, especially for the production of electric vehicles. The annual capacity of the extrusion press will be around 10,000 tons.

"We are investing in an extrusion press that meets all our technological requirements. The flexibility in production and the wide product diversity give our company a solid foundation for this new business area. SMS group's extrusion technology is the most advanced in its class and is resource-efficient too," says Zhang Guoshuai, Technical Project Manager at Shandong Weiqiao Light Metal.

The extrusion press is capable of processing billets with a maximum diameter of 254 millimeters (ten inches) and a maximum length of 1,200 millimeters. The fully automatic circulation of the loose dummy blocks and the indirect dies is performed by an auxiliary robot.

SMS group is building the extrusion press for Shandong Weiqiao according to a proven design with the patented plate-type press frame, which makes the press structure much more rigid and thus sturdier. The built-in, high-precision linear guides are practically maintenance-free.

Thanks to the servo drive technology used for all auxiliary functions as well as the EcoDraulic concept that reduces energy consumption, the press boasts a highly favorable energy balance. All pumps that are not required during the extrusion process are switched off via the automatic start-stop feature.

SMS group's modular technology and process control package offers additional possibilities for optimization. The CadEX®/3 (Computer Aided Direct Extrusion) system for isothermal and isobaric direct extrusion calculates the optimum extrusion speed and billet temperature for each profile type. This enables a higher surface quality and material structure of the profile to be achieved, which also significantly reduces the scrap rate at the same time. The PICOS® software from SMS documents all process and product-relevant data, which can be retrieved for certification purposes, e. g. for automotive engineering. With the integrated IBA measuring and analysis system, fault diagnoses can be performed remotely, thus reducing downtimes during production.

SMS group will deliver the press in pre-assembled equipment units to Zouping City, which will significantly reduce the installation time at the customer's site. The acceptance test for the new 28 MN direct-indirect extrusion and tube press is scheduled for the third quarter of 2022.

Source and photo: SMS group

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