The hottest technology to seize the top of high-en

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The "13th five year plan" period is a critical period for China's non-ferrous metal industry to transform and upgrade, improve quality and efficiency, and enter the ranks of world non-ferrous metal industrial powers. With the development of strategic emerging industries such as transportation lightweight, new energy vehicles, high-end equipment manufacturing, energy conservation and environmental protection, the demand for heat-treatment enhanced high-end aluminum alloy plate and strip continues to grow. However, the situation of serious shortage of independent supply capacity in China is in front of us and needs to be solved urgently

"although China is the world's number one producer and consumer of aluminum processing materials, it is always at the middle and low end of the aluminum industry chain. High precision and sophisticated products represented by aluminum alloy automobile outer panels and aviation aluminum alloy pre stretched wing panels have been heavily dependent on imports, and the fundamental reason is that the production equipment and process of high-performance aluminum alloys have not kept up." Professor Wang Zhaodong, director of the State Key Laboratory of rolling technology and continuous rolling automation, said

in Wang Zhaodong's view, in order to strengthen China's aluminum processing industry, we must "consolidate the foundation and cultivate the yuan", start with the "hematopoietic" ability, and speed up the construction and upgrading of high-end aluminum production lines represented by "air cushion heat treatment furnace" and "high-precision roller hearth furnace"

aiming at national demand and benchmarking with world-class products, Professor Wang Zhaodong's team focuses on breakthroughs in new high-strength and high toughness aluminum alloy thick plates, three generations of aluminum lithium alloy plates, high-corrosion-resistant aluminum alloy plates and profiles for land and water transportation, and based on its own strength, is committed to fundamentally achieving a stable supply of high-performance aluminum alloys for aviation, passenger cars and freight trains, and breaking the gap between high-end aluminum materials and foreign advanced equipment Solid steps have been taken in technology and product dependence

high end aluminum: the "blue ocean" of Applied Materials in the transportation field.

aluminum is one of the most commonly used light metals, and it is also one of the elements with the widest distribution and the largest storage in the earth's crust. Aluminum and aluminum alloy materials have a series of excellent characteristics since 2017, such as small specific gravity, high specific strength, good formability, mechanical properties, physical properties and process properties, as well as easy recycling and renewable environment-friendly characteristics

in the global metal industry, the application of aluminum ranks second, second only to steel, and is widely used in all sectors of industrial production. High performance aluminum alloy sheets, plates and profiles are the key basic materials in the fields of national economic development and national defense construction, such as transportation, aerospace, marine ships, etc. they are also widely used in consumer electronics, new energy, intelligent equipment and other fields

ultra light new energy vehicles, domestic large aircraft and high-speed train plates, strips and profiles are high-end products in aluminum alloy materials. In recent years, with the rapid growth of the automotive industry, aviation industry, high-speed rail and other transportation industries, the demand for "noble" aluminum alloy sheet, strip and profile is also growing

with the increasing requirements of saving fuel consumption and reducing emissions, lightweight vehicles have become the current application hotspot of high-end aluminum. According to Wang Zhaodong, Mercedes Benz, BMW and other high-end cars have begun to use a large number of high-performance aluminum alloy car plates. Chinese aluminum enterprises have also made great efforts in the field of automotive applications, but there are still some bottlenecks. The main reason is that the quantitative application of aluminum requires a process, such as aluminum alloy professional stamping equipment, heat treatment equipment, technical standards, etc; At the same time, the application cost of automotive aluminum also needs to be optimized through quantitative application and other measures

according to China Nonferrous Metals News, it is estimated that the trial application of aluminum in body, safety system and other components will take another 2-3 years. It is expected that by 2020, the lightweight and large-scale use of aluminum for automobiles will be realized

"aerospace is an important field for the application of high-end aluminum, but at present, domestic aluminum has not been widely used in this field. The problem is that domestic aluminum still needs to be improved in performance stability and consistency." Li Yong, a teacher from the State Key Laboratory of rolling technology and continuous rolling automation, said

with the rapid development of China's large aircraft manufacturing, domestic aluminum has a huge application space in this field. However, due to the special favor of carbon fiber composites, aluminum enterprises focus on the development of new aerospace aluminum materials such as a new generation of aluminum lithium alloy and aluminum matrix composites, so as to expand the development space, occupy the market and improve their competitiveness

"the strong demand for high-end aluminum in the transportation sector is the best time to strengthen China's aluminum processing industry." Professor Wang Zhaodong believes that demand is the biggest driving force for innovation, and it is also the "place of use" for the team to write papers on the production line of the motherland

controlled by others: equipment and technology are monopolized by foreign countries, and the price is expensive. The supply cycle is long.

air cushion furnace technology is the core technology of high-end aluminum production, processing and heat treatment. At present, air cushion furnaces are mainly supplied by a few large foreign companies such as Alberta and Juncker, but the price is expensive. Each air cushion furnace production line needs about 300million yuan; The supply cycle is long. The construction cycle of each set of equipment takes about 3 years, and strict technical blockade is carried out on the core control process. The production cost of the enterprise is too high, and the maintenance and upgrading cost is higher

"most of the domestic traditional solid solution treatment equipment for aluminum alloy medium and thick plates and profiles are vertical quenching furnaces or salt bath furnaces. The heating accuracy is poor, the cooling of quenched plates cannot be controlled freely, and the organizational performance is unstable, the shape of plates is poor, and the residual stress is large. Therefore, it is impossible to produce high-performance aluminum alloy medium and thick plates and profiles for aviation, automobile and other purposes." Han Yi, the State Key Laboratory of rolling technology and continuous rolling automation, pointed out the difficulties and blocking points of the enterprise

for a long time, high-performance aluminum alloy automobile plates, medium and heavy plates and profiles have been the weak fields of China's aluminum processing industry. An important reason is that the research foundation of the key equipment of the aluminum alloy plate strip air cushion furnace, medium and heavy plates and profile roller hearth furnace production line is weak. The heat treatment production of high-performance aluminum alloy plate profiles involves many process parameters, complex processes, great development difficulties, and the relevant core equipment has been controlled by people for a long time, Independent control of key technologies has not yet been achieved

teacher Lijiadong from the State Key Laboratory of rolling technology and continuous rolling automation told that according to the trend of using aluminum alloy in the international automotive industry, in the domestic market, passenger cars with a price of more than 100000 yuan can choose aluminum alloy plate and strip as auto covering parts, and the consumption of a single car will be 20-30kg. The China Automobile Industry Association predicts that China's automobile output will reach more than 30million vehicles in 2020. It is conservatively estimated that 15million vehicles will use aluminum alloy plate and strip, and the plate and strip used in the automobile industry will reach more than 300000-450000 tons

in the aviation field, only a certain type of domestic military aircraft requires more than 3000 high-end aluminum alloy plate, strip and profile parts, and the number of aluminum alloy plate, strip and profile parts required by new large transport aircraft and large passenger aircraft exceeds 10000

however, by the end of 2017, the production equipment introduced by China is far from meeting the consumption demand of aluminum alloy strips and profiles in high-end manufacturing fields such as automobile and aviation, nor can it achieve the technical improvement required by the research and development of aluminum alloy varieties in China. Taking Guangxi Nannan aluminum company as an example, the actual production capacity of the air cushion production line is 40000 tons, and the current demand capacity is 90000 tons; The actual capacity of the plate roller hearth furnace is 50000 tons. Now the required capacity of the two Amur products using spectrum shield material have passed the live fire evaluation for many times and have been proved to be able to defend 100000 tons of rifle threats

"the development of air cushion furnace equipment, medium and heavy plate and profile roller hearth furnace technology with China's independent intellectual property rights meets the strong demand of China's automotive, aviation, high-speed rail and other industrial structure adjustment and product upgrading, conforms to the national situation of energy conservation and emission reduction, and has important economic and strategic significance." Wang Guodong, academician of the Chinese Academy of engineering and professor of Northeastern University, said

key move: independent research and development of high-end aluminum alloy production heat treatment equipment and process

"localization of air cushion heat treatment furnace, plate and profile roller hearth furnace equipment can provide necessary equipment for the development and stable production of high-performance aluminum plate, strip and profile, and production technology if the friction surface of the sample produces large plastic deformation in the friction process." Wang Zhaodong believes that the key to solving the problem should start from the "root" of independent research and development of production equipment. According to Wang Zhaodong's estimation, after independent production with domestic equipment, the current price of high-end aluminum at 40000 yuan/ton can be reduced to about 20000-30000 yuan/ton

the innovative team of advanced rolling technology and heat treatment of Northeastern University, led by professors Wang Guodong, Wang Zhaodong and other industry experts, and dominated by young and middle-aged scientific and technological innovation backbones, has written green with innovation, solved problems with hard work, and made precise efforts in the key link of improving the "blood making" ability of aluminum production - the production of heat treatment equipment and the research and development of new processes, laying a "first hand" in high-end aluminum production

in 2018, the team began to tackle the key heat treatment equipment of high-end aluminum - air cushion furnace and roller hearth furnace in theory, and focused on breaking through the key equipment technology of air cushion furnace and roller hearth furnace heating and quenching of large aluminum alloy plate, strip and profile, as well as the integrated technology of supporting treatment equipment and the automatic control platform technology of the whole line process, At present, breakthrough progress has been made:

-- the mechanism of dynamic stable floating and rapid and uniform heat transfer of air cushion heat treatment has been found out, the key structure of the core components of air cushion furnace has been optimized, and the air cushion control model has been established. On this basis, the pilot plant of large air cushion furnace has been independently developed, and the non-contact, high-precision, high uniformity and efficient heat treatment of aluminum strip have been realized

-- an experimental platform for advanced heat treatment and surface treatment of aluminum alloy has been built. Using this platform, the team has developed efficient solid solution, quenching, pre aging and surface treatment processes for high-grade aluminum alloy suitable for the actual air cushion furnace production line

-- independently developed a multi-level, fully automatic process control system for aluminum alloy air cushion continuous heat treatment and surface treatment

at present, the team is cooperating with Guangxi Nannan aluminum processing company to build air cushion heat treatment demonstration lines, medium and heavy plate roller hearth furnace heat treatment demonstration lines and profile roller hearth furnace heat treatment demonstration lines for the production of high-end aluminum alloys for automobile, aviation and other transportation in full swing. After 19 years of inspection, the team can complete the design, manufacturing and commissioning of the demonstration line, so as to break the foreign monopoly, achieve a breakthrough in the domestic equipment, process and production technology of high-end aluminum alloy automobile panels and aviation panels, and achieve independent control in the key heat treatment equipment and process technology of high-end aluminum alloy materials

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