Title: Semi-solid moulding technology in making automotive turbocharge compressor wheels

Authors: Fan Zhang; Qiang Zhu; Daquan Li; Youfeng He; Xiaojing Xu

Addresses: General Research Institute for Non-Ferrous Metals, 2 Xinjiekou Wai Street, Beijing 100088, China ' General Research Institute for Non-Ferrous Metals, 2 Xinjiekou Wai Street, Beijing 100088, China ' General Research Institute for Non-Ferrous Metals, 2 Xinjiekou Wai Street, Beijing 100088, China ' General Research Institute for Non-Ferrous Metals, 2 Xinjiekou Wai Street, Beijing 100088, China ' General Research Institute for Non-Ferrous Metals, 2 Xinjiekou Wai Street, Beijing 100088, China

Abstract: Diesel and gasoline engines are the most important sources of energy consuming, emission and global warming. To increase fuel efficiency and reduce emission, air pressure ratio of the engine needs to be further increased. The increase of air pressure is achieved by a compressor wheel in the turbocharger. The compressor wheel needs very complex blade geometry to achieve high pressure ratios. The very latest technique for impeller manufacture is called semi-solid moulding (SSM). This paper will present recent development of SSM including thixo-casting and rheo-casting processes in making aluminium compressor wheels. Experimental results show SSM material has superior microstructure and mechanical properties over cast and is comparable to material machined from solid. Component testing including performance and durability testing proves the SSM compressor wheels emerge as being significantly more durable than cast equivalents and approaching that of machined impellers.

Keywords: aluminium alloys; cost reduction; durability; automotive parts; automotive manufacturing; complex components; turbocharger compressor wheels; automobile industry; semi-solid moulding; SSM; blade geometry; air pressure ratio; fuel efficiency; emissions reduction; impeller manufacturing; thixo-casting; rheo-casting; microstructure; mechanical properties.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCMSSE.2016.081684

International Journal of Computational Materials Science and Surface Engineering, 2016 Vol.6 No.3/4, pp.204 - 214

Available online: 18 Jan 2017 *

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