ArcelorMittal’s Tailored Blanks division has teamed up with leading welding systems manufacturer ANDRITZ Soutec to roll out cutting-edge laser welding technology across the globe.
ArcelorMittal has developed a patented laser ablation technology to weld Usibor®, a steel specially designed for hot stamping. The partnership with ANDRITZ Soutec to roll out this technology will increase the availability of laser welding for hot stamping steels, which is increasingly in demand from carmakers as they strive to make cars lighter - which makes them more fuel efficient – and safer.
ArcelorMittal is the leading supplier of steels for hot stamping. The company’s advanced hot stamping products Usibor® and Ductibor® are delivered with an aluminium-silicon coating which protects car parts during heat treatment as well as protecting against corrosion. However, without the laser ablation process, the weld may become fragile and subject to corrosion. With laser ablation, the aluminium-silicon coating is removed from the surface near the weld by vaporisation, using the latest high energy lasers, and then laser welded. The partial ablation process developed by ArcelorMittal provides a superior weld and protection compared with other ablation technologies.
Hot stamping steel solutions are the best way to increase the strength of steel in order to produce thinner and lighter steel parts while improving or maintaining the same crash performance. Laser welded blanks (LWBs) enable carmakers to reduce a vehicle’s weight and improve safety by putting the right steel grade, with the right thickness, in the right place for each car part.
Thanks to laser ablation, hot stamping and LWBs are a winning combination for lightweighting the most challenging car parts.
The hot stamped LWBs market has grown significantly in recent years. For the automotive industry, it is key to make sure this technology is available worldwide. Thanks to this partnership, the automotive industry can rely on efficient equipment, providing high quality products. In addition, existing welding lines can be upgraded with the ablation technology, licensed by ArcelorMittal.
Philippe Baudon, CEO ArcelorMittal Tailored Blanks said:
“By cooperating with ANDRITZ Soutec, a leader in welding technology, we are reaching a new phase in developing cost efficient solutions, supporting car manufacturers in reducing car weight and improving crash resistance.”
Domenico Iacovelli, CEO ANDRITZ Soutec added:
“ArcelorMittal has developed a superior process guaranteeing quality and productivity of the welding process of steels for hot stamping. Thanks to this cooperation, we will offer the global automotive industry an efficient solution which will further support the growth of LWBs for hot stamping.”
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About ANDRITZ Soutec
ANDRITZ Soutec is a specialist for laser and rolled seam resistance welding systems for a wide array of applications. ANDRITZ Group is a globally leading supplier of plants, equipment and services for many industrial sectors.