In the last few decades, computer simulation of forging processes has gone from being a promising laboratory technique to a mainstream step in designing and executing forging designs and the tooling used to produce them. Learn more about where the technology is headed in the future.
During the last three decades, simulating the forging process has developed into a mainstream tool. Numerous success stories have been reported by companies around the world. Applications have included die fill, defect formation, tool failure and overall process optimization. Initially, the emphasis was to simulate one forging operation independently of prior history.
The distinction between forging a cast and wrought microstructure was captured in the flow-stress model. This empirical method was generally successful. Very quickly, the sequence of operations was modeled because a production problem may occur early in the process. Hot forging models use a non-isothermal model and heat transfer between operations to capture the temperature influence on the workpiece flow stress. A cold-forming progression could be analyzed by maintaining the strain distribution in the workpiece to account for work hardening.
In the early 1990s, various processes required the simulation of sequential processes of a different pedigree. This opened up the topic of vertical integration. Recently, researchers and leading users of simulation software have migrated toward simulating the entire manufacturing process chain. For the most part, geometry development is mature in commercial software today. On the other hand, the microstructure models are the source of considerable and ongoing effort.