• Improving heating-based components with foam

    Open-cell metal foam can be used in heat exchangers, convectors and coolers.   © Fraunhofer IFAM Dresden

    The energy efficiency of heat exchangers, convectors and cooling elements can be improved even further. Open-pore structures made of metal foam, which have good thermal conductivity and a large surface, offer interesting possibilities here. The BINE Projektinfo brochure entitled "Metal foam – a material for heat engineering" (11/2016) presents the development work for these materials. The aim is to optimise the manufacturing process, reduce costs and test the materials on test rigs. The material properties of the different alloys will be recorded in a database.

  • Lightweight Metal Foams Become Bone Hard and Explosion Proof After Being Nanocoated

    (c) Saarland University

    Strong enough not only for use in impact protection systems in cars, but able to absorb the shock waves produced by a detonation. Those are just some of the properties shown by the metallic foams developed by materials scientists Stefan Diebels and Anne Jung at Saarland University. Their super lightweight and extremely strong metal foams can be customized for a wide range of applications. The inspiration for the new foam system came from nature: bones. Using a patented coating process, the Saarbrücken team is able to manufacture highly stable, porous metallic foams that can be used, for example, in lightweight construction projects.

  • New laser processes for innovative lightweight design

    Laser-remote cut metallic foam made of aluminum (left) and steel (right). © Fraunhofer IWS Dresden

    Lightweight design is one of the mostly progressive research areas involved in accomplishing the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources, as well as the reduction of CO2 emissions. Innovative materials, such as carbon or glass fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP/GFRP), as well as metal foams, contribute to the successful implementation of the target set by the Federal Government. The Fraunhofer IWS has been researching in this field for many years to provide promising and affordable solutions for our industrial and research partners. One of these solutions is the laser-remote cutting technique.

  • Process Chain for Industrialized Rotor Blade Production Set in Motion

    Automized pick-and-place process for stacked cuttings, large textile & sandwich preforms. Harry Zier

    Following commissioning of the production portal last spring, Fraunhofer IWES has now reached the next milestone in the BladeMaker joint research project: the integration of the process steps as the basis for a prototypical end-to-end process is now under way. The first step is production of the first shear web with direct infusion, followed by shear web manufacturing with PUR foam core elements, the production of the first half of the form tool, and the testing of a new gripper principle for the handling of cuttings. By completion of the project at the end of this year, all of the optimized processes will be merged and adapted to the production sequence.