hpl-Neugnadenfelder presents casting and rolling plant for magnesium wire

End of August 2017, German plant manufacturer hpl-Neugnadenfelder Maschinenfabrik GmbH presented its recent development: a pilot plant for the production of magnesium wire by casting and direct rolling. This unique facility incorporates a new manufacturing technology developed by hpl-Neugnadenfelder in close cooperation with the Institute of Metal Forming at the technical university Bergakademie Freiberg, Germany.
The casting and rolling plant combines two basic, consecutive processes for the production of magnesium wire which have been carried out separately so far: the casting of melted magnesium that solidifies abruptly in the roll gap as well as the forming (rolling) of this just solidified magnesium profile in the roll gap. New structures occur inside the material with positive effect on material properties like the formability of the wire.

The special layout of the pilot plant was presented in all detail to the interested guests. Project manager Günter Veldmann and sales manager Hans-Joachim Biedermann (both hpl-Neugnadenfelder) emphasized the design concept that differs extensively from standard rolling mills. The rolls are not positioned between the housing stands as usual. In the engineering phase, hpl has put special focus on the research-intensive application and has positioned the rolls outside the mill housing. Operators have free access to the rolls, so they can make fine adjustments to optimize the technology.

The newly developed casting and rolling technology provides a basis for further research aiming for the innovative production of magnesium wire – a material that is expected to play an important role in the future revolutionizing especially the automotive and transport industry. Rudolf Kawalla, director of the Institute of Metal Forming and chair of forming technology at the Bergakademie Freiberg, emphasizes the potential of magnesium wire in different areas of everyday life. Magnesium wire could be used to manufacture high-strength bolts, special filler wires or to fix fractures in the field of medicine. If good results are obtained from the research activities, many new products will be developed to enter the market within some years.

The casting and rolling plant will be supplied to the Institute of Metal Forming in Freiberg in early autumn 2017. The commissioning is scheduled for the period October/November 2017. Research activities will start immediately after the line will have been put into operation.

© Pictures: hpl-Neugnadenfelder Maschinenfabrik