Faster materials development with a virtual process line for plate rolling
8 November, 2022
The vision is for Swedish manufacturers of metallic materials to be able to gain access to virtual process lines and design tools for metalworking and heating processes, resulting in faster materials development. In the FINBEAM and FINBEAM2 projects we are working with the entire chain; i.e., from fundamental material models to applied process simulation and verification via industrial-scale trials.
"Integrated metalworking modelling in full scale (FINBEAM)" has now been granted funding to continue in a three-year project within the strategic innovation programme Metallic Materials. This is a broad collaboration involving 13 different partners including universities, research institutes, and metal and software companies.
"We are taking on this enormous challenge in order to ensure the future competitiveness of materials producers," says Rachel Pettersson, Research Manager at Jernkontoret and project co-ordinator.
One of the project's case studies, led by SSAB Special Steels in Oxelösund, delimited the work in previous projects to heating, rolling and hardening. SSAB has provided process data from rolling trials, such as rolling speed, reductions, temperature during rolling, flow stress and measured roll forces. Swerim contributed corresponding simulated material data with the help of a Gleeble thermomechanical simulator, which was used to describe how the steel changes during these process stages in controlled laboratory trials.
In the continuation project DYNAmore will assist with implementation of material models and process simulation. Material phenomena include the hardening that occurs during rolling and the softening with relaxation and recrystallisation that takes place between deformations. The image below shows examples of simulated rolling forces compared with the process data.
Simulated rolling forces with LS-Dyna, compared with rolling forces measured at SSAB Oxelösund. From the publication:”Simulation of Hot Plate Rolling using LS-DYNA©, Mikael Schill et al, DYNAmore Nordic, Linköping, Sweden, 13 th LS-Dyna Conf., 2021, Ulm, Germany”.
Describing material behaviour during plate rolling
"At Swerim we have conducted materials testing and developed material models suitable for implementation in FE tools and determining the changes that take place in the material during plate rolling. This includes many different tools for structure development and process modelling," explains Hans Magnusson, who is responsible for capturing data related to material behaviour during rolling in a laboratory environment. Examples of how these models are related to one another are illustrated in the image below.
It isn't so easy to create a model of the rolling process.
"The FINBEAM project presents many computation-related challenges. To begin with, it is always a very great challenge to simulate something as big as a rolling mill at macro scale in order to try to predict results at the micro level. As always, boundary conditions, as well as temperature and friction, are extremely important, and it is always a challenge to determine these factors in a production setting," says Mikael Schill at DYNAmore Nordic, developer of a simulation model for rolling within the project. "Together with Swerim and SSAB, we succeeded in setting an appropriate level of detail and successively worked through all of the issues. The result was an effective and sufficiently accurate model that describes how the material is affected throughout the entire rolling process, and also enables description of process variables such as rolling forces and temperatures.”
The following partners are participating in FINBEAM2: Jernkontoret, Outokumpu, SSAB Europe, SSAB Special Steels, Alleima, Gestamp, Gränges, Impetus, DYNAmore, Swerim, Högskolan Dalarna, Luleå University of Technology and KTH, the Royal Institute of Technology.
The work is being carried out within the strategic innovation programme Metallic Materials, with the participation of Vinova, Formas and the Swedish Energy Agency, starting on 1 October and concluding on 30 September 2025. The co-ordinator is Rachel Pettersson, Jernkontoret (Swedish Steel Producers' Association). Swerim is the leading research partner and is providing materials testing, materials modelling and management of the research package.