Siempelkamp breaks own world record

Upper cross beam weighing 283 t is on its way to one of the world"s highest-capacity closed-die forging presses. Only in May 2009, Siempelkamp had produced what at that time was the heaviest ever produced nodular iron casting, weighing 270 t. ...

Online PR News – 16-September-2010 – – Only in May 2009, Siempelkamp had produced what at that time was the heaviest ever produced nodular iron casting, weighing 270 t. In early July 2010, the company broke this record by producing the upper cross beam for the Super Giant forging press of Alcoa - with a total of 283 t of molten iron. Meanwhile the upper beam and the other castings for this press have been finish machined and are already on their way to the USA.

Alcoa Forging & Extrusions in Cleveland/Ohio produces structural parts made of aluminium and high-quality quenched and tempered steels for the aircraft industry on the Super Giant, one of the world"s largest closed-die forging presses. For an upgrade of the meanwhile over 50-year-old plant, Siempelkamp was contracted by Alcoa to engineer and produce the castings for this project. Siempelkamp recently shipped all 14 castings for the upper, moving and lower beams as well as the foundation stools of the press. Ten of these parts weigh between 200 and 250 t.

The heaviest part, the upper beam sized 10,900 x 3,950 x 2,740 mm (l x w x h), was cast on July 8. A total of 283 t of molten iron were teemed at a temperature of about 1,350 °C from five casting ladles in 120 seconds. Only in May 2009, Siempelkamp had produced at its Krefeld foundry what then had been the heaviest ever produced nodular cast iron casting in the world, weighing 270 t.

The upgrade, which involves replacing the heavy castings, will make the press in Cleveland the most modern and productive forging press of its class. Within the framework of this order, Siempelkamp has analyzed the design of the press, which dates back to the 1950s, carried out FEM (finite element method) calculations and optimized the design according to the latest technology towards a given maximum component weight. This has resulted in parts which due to their modern design and material properties are fatigue endurable and will remain in service for several decades to come.

The special challenge for the design engineers was that the new parts, which incorporate 50 years of technological development, had to be fitted into the existing structure of the press with the accuracy of a millimeter.

After cooling in the mold for about four weeks, the casting was lifted out of the casting pit and machined at the Krefeld factory on high-capacity machines, which are capable of handling parts with a clamping length of up to 22 m. Siempelkamp is currently the only manufacturer of presses in the world in a position to produce castings of nodular cast iron of this magnitude in its own foundry and machine these castings at its own facilities.

For more than half a century Alcoa has produced structural components made of aluminium for the aircraft industry, for example, fuselage frames of up to 6 x 2 m size, on this closed-die forging press in Cleveland. In addition to those products, the press produces turbine components made of nickel-based super-alloys.

Started up in 1955, the 45,000 t press was for a long time the backbone for USA"s leading role in the international aviation industry. More than 26 m tall, the press weighs some 8,000 t - enough steel to produce more than 65 km of railway rails. Alone the nuts that hold the press components together weigh up to 55 t. If the force of 45,000 t was to be produced by weight instead of hydraulics, it would be necessary to place a block of steel taller than the Cologne Cathedral on the 24 m2 press table.

Because of its exceptionally high pressing force and its central meaning for the American aircraft industry, the Super Giant" has become a "National Historic Mehanical Engineering Landmark" in the United States.

After having been in service for more than 50 years and making hundred thousands of strokes, the central components, such as the beams and foundation stools, are reaching the end of their lifetime. Therefore they must be renewed and brought to the latest state of the art.

About Siempelkamp
For decades Siempelkamp has gained great experience in engineering and manufacturing metal forming presses. These include sheet forming presses for the production of large pipes and half shells, straightening presses, presses for the production of side rails, presses for heat exchanger plates, hydroforming presses, presses for the production of differential carriers as well as the full line of closed and open-die forging presses.

The company specializes in customized presses with high pressing forces.

With the three business areas Machinery and Plant Manufacturing, Foundry and Nuclear Technology, the Siempelkamp Group is a leading technology provider with international scope. The company enjoys worldwide reputation as systems supplier of presses and press lines for the metals industry as well as turn-key plants for the wood-working industry.

The Group employs more than 2,750 people worldwide.

Siempelkamp Maschinen- und Anlagenbau GmbH & Co. KG
Ralf Griesche, Marketing + Communication
Siempelkampstraße 75
47803 Krefeld


Regina Reinhardt
Süsterfeldstraße 83