PRESSES & MACHINERY FOR THE AEROSPACE INDUSTRY
Forming parts for aerospace industry requires advanced machinery with the highest degree of accuracy, incredible power, and the capacity to handle large sheets to form parts with great complexity. Whether the challenge at hand is hot forming titanium, deep drawing heat tolerant engine alloys, or compression molding composite components, Beckwood provides the ideal process for your aerospace manufacturing needs.
We offer presses and forming machines designed to tackle the unique challenges faced by the aerospace industry. Learn about how our high-quality machinery can take your aerospace forming to new heights:
TRIFORM Fluid Cell Sheet Hydroforming Presses
- Going beyond traditional press equipment, Beckwood has the expertise in specialized aerospace forming equipment thanks to the ingenuity of our TRIFORM Engineers. Beckwood’s Triform™sheet hydroforming presses thrive in low-volume, high-mix production environments where tool changes occur frequently and manufacturing processes are continually refined. Sheet hydroforming presses use a pressurized rubber diaphragm and a single, un-mated tool to create near-net-shape parts in just one cycle. Triform’s proprietary In-Sight software even allows you to view forming progress at any point throughout a cycle and adjust the recipe to achieve optimum forming results. This feature greatly expedites R&D and reduces costs and scrap.
TRIFORM Ring Expanders
- A ring expander forms strong, symmetrical, ring-shaped parts commonly used in the aerospace industry for turbine engine manufacture. It works by using hydraulic pressure to push a set of expanding jaws against the inside surface of the ring, which causes it to expand. Hydraulic ring expanders are typically used to prepare piston rings for installation in an engine, where they must be precisely sized and shaped to provide a proper seal between the piston and cylinder wall. Overall, hydraulic ring expanders are an effective tool for expanding metal rings quickly and uniformly, with minimal risk of damaging the ring or causing uneven expansion. The ring expanding process minimizes material thinning and virtually eliminates the stress point issues associated with traditional rolling and machining. These rings can be made from a variety of high-strength materials including Inconel, Hastelloy and Titanium, among others.
TRIFORM Stretch Forming Equipment
- Stretch forming is a type of metalworking most commonly used in aerospace applications. This process can produce parts of varying complexity, from a simple curved part such as an aircraft skin to one with intricate geometries consisting of non-uniform cross sections. Most leading edge parts, joined structural sections, and contoured trim are created using a stretch forming machine. The main advantage of the stretch forming process is the ability to form large metal sheets and extrusions into complex shapes in a single cycle. Work hardening is a byproduct of the stretch forming process resulting in parts with a higher tensile strength and minimal springback. Since sheet and extrusion stretch forming machines use a single die, mated tooling is not required–saving up to 50% on tooling costs compared to traditional forming methods. Additionally, parts are free from scratches and scuffs, so secondary finishing is not required.
TRIFORM Deep Draw Sheet Hydroforming Presses
- Like fluid cell sheet hydroforming, deep draw sheet hydroforming uses a pressurized rubber diaphragm and a single unmated tool to form complex shapes. However, as the name suggests, deep draw hydroforming allows for deeper parts to be drawn- in some cases, up to 12” tall! These machines can easily be converted to double as fluid cell hydroforming presses as well by replacing the flexible draw ring with a solid one. Compared to conventional press tooling, deep draw sheet hydroforming presses reduce overall tooling costs by up to an astonishing 90%.
Compression Molding Presses
- Compression molding presses utilized heated or cooled platens to achieve a desired forming temperature. They are extremely versatile tools which can be used to shape a wide range of materials from lightweight composites to high-strength alloys. This makes them excellent for aerospace forming facilities which often produce a low volume of high-variety parts. We can manufacture custom compression molding presses for:
- Injection Molding
- Composite Forming
- Extrusion Forming
- Reaction Injection Molding (RIM)
- Powder Compacting
- HDPE Sheet Making
- UHMW Sheet Making
Hot Forming & Superplastic Forming Presses
- Beckwood hot forming and SPF presses provide ultimate precision, optimal temperature control and uniformity, and extreme process repeatability. Common to all Beckwood hot forming or superplastic forming machines are options to efficiently handle the extremely high temperatures inherent to the process. Platens can be fabricated from ceramics, stainless materials, or other exotic metal alloys depending on the specific application requirements. Automated insulated door systems can be provided to efficiently contain the heat within the forming chamber, while also allowing adequate access during part or tool loading and unloading sequences.
- During the hot forming process, both the tool and blank achieve a preheat temperature up to 2,000°F to increase the plasticity and elongation characteristics of the material. The introduction of heat allows for the formation of high-strength materials at significantly lower tonnages when compared to cold forming without the risk of cracking, spring-back, or residual stress.
- SPF uses extreme temperatures in conjunction with argon gas to form high-strength alloys into complex shapes in a single step. During an SPF cycle, preheated blank material is clamped between a die and a plate. Argon gas, injected through the die into the forming chamber, pushes the blank into the die. The resulting parts have a fine surface finish and are near-net-shape, eliminating the need for secondary finishing.
- Hot forming and SPF presses are both available in hydraulic or servo-actuated options, so you can choose what powers your press. Beckwood is currently the only manufacturer to offer servo-actuated hot forming presses.
Linear Servo Press Technology
- Complex draw work and stamping high-strength alloys require tight process control. With Beckwood LSP™, you can easily program ram position, travel distance, and speeds for maximum productivity. With instant feedback for diagnostics and data acquisition to record and measure torque, force, position, and time, no press offers more precision or better part quality. With presses ranging from 125 – 500 tons, Beckwood LSP™ offers the highest tonnage capacity of any linear servo press available. High precision, uptime, reliability, and unmatched forming flexibility are pillars of this world-class press technology. The use of a servo motor and linear motion system allows for greater control over the pressing process, including the ability to adjust the press force, speed, and stroke. This makes linear servo presses ideal for stamping of high-strength steels, complex draw forming, progressive die forming, assembly, and any application that requires high-precision and/or accuracy.
- For light-duty part forming and assembly operations, consider our line of EVOx servo-electric presses. With options for actuator size, frame type, dwell time, heated platens, safety features, and more, these machines can be configured to suit your process needs. The EVOx is available in a tonnage as low as 2.5 tons to as high as 50 tons. Positional repeatability to within ±0.0005″ is made easy with this machine designed for high accuracy and high precision.
Rubber Pad Presses
- Rubber pad forming is an alternative to sheet hydroforming which has a lower initial startup cost. Like sheet hydroforming, rubber pad forming uses a single unmated tool and an elastomeric diaphragm to form parts. This allows for immense forming versatility in environments where low-volume, high-mix workloads are common. One benefit of rubber pad forming is that most hydraulic presses can be converted to a rubber pad press with the simple addition of an enclosed, elastomeric pad box. Unlike sheet hydroforming processes, rubber pad forming will almost always require additional secondary finishing operations.
Custom Hydraulic Presses
- Beckwood specializes in engineering and building custom presses for every manufacturing challenge. This often means designing solutions that do not fit within a standard configuration in order to meet the unique needs and space requirements of specialized manufacturing facilities. A custom press engineered for your specific application and production facility will give you a competitive edge and prove its ROI faster than you might expect. In addition to custom frame styles, custom-engineered presses can also improve accuracy, efficiency, safety, and uptime depending on the options chosen during the design phase.