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Advantages of Low-pressure Die Casting and Its Application in the Automotive Industry

Understanding low pressure die casting

Low pressure die casting is a commonly used process in today's foundries where molten metal is slowly filled into the mold, reducing turbulence. Automotive applications include wheels as well as suspension, steering, and engine components. Non-automotive parts typically made by the low pressure die casting process include bend pipes and bell housings. Low pressure die casting can achieve castings with very good metallurgical quality.

Low pressure die casting is a production method that uses pressure instead of gravity to fill molds with molten metals such as aluminum and magnesium. In this process, a holding furnace is located beneath the casting and the liquid metal is forced upward through a riser into the die. Pressure is continually applied, sometimes incrementally, to fill the mold and hold the metal in place until it solidifies. Once the casting has solidified, the pressure is released and any remaining liquid in the riser or die is returned to the holding furnace for "recycling." The casting is then removed once cooled.

Advantages of low pressure die casting

This method allows for precise control of the filling process. Injecting molten metal in this manner reduces oxide formation and reduces porosity, ensuring excellent consistency from top to bottom. Therefore, low pressure die casting can produce castings with excellent density and strength values as well as exceptional dimensional accuracy. While this method is ideal for simpler, symmetrical shapes, more complex geometries can be achieved by using sand cores in the die. With simple mechanics and process advantages, the low pressure die casting process is ideal for automation.

Applications of low pressure die casting in the automotive industry

For decades, the automotive industry has relied on low pressure die casting to produce durable, high-quality aluminum castings. However, due to its relatively slow casting process, its use has been limited to luxury car models in the automotive market, where production numbers are lower and costs are higher. However, now that cost-effective methods have been successfully found to make this method more cost-effective (such as making the machine larger overall but saving space due to its vertical structure), the automotive industry has reduced casting cycle times by 50%, making low pressure die casting a more economical choice than before.

While low pressure die casting is a special choice for automotive components such as engine blocks, wheels, and suspension parts, non-automotive industries such as electronics, mechanical manufacturing, and pipeline components also benefit from its lower processing costs, high production volumes, and exceptional metallurgical quality. Aluminum casting's excellent electrical and thermal conductivity makes it an ideal choice for all of these industries.

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