The terms "primary forming" and "forming" cover all manufacturing processes in which a solid body with a geometrically defined shape is created from a material. At the Fraunhofer IPT, we work with materials such as glass and plastic or with sheet metal, which we provide in high quality for a wide range of applications.
Our specialties are complexly shaped components with high surface quality manufactured to close tolerances. Here, primary and forming processes offer the advantage of comparatively lower energy consumption, better material utilization than, for example, machining, and not least the possibility of producing large quantities in a short time.
Reducing costs in the series production of high-quality components
These processes are therefore particularly suitable for the series production of complex and high-quality components, for example for consumer electronics, vehicle construction or medical technology. Precise glass and plastic optics, as well as microstructured and microfluidic components, can be manufactured in this way without further post-processing steps. The resulting components find their place in entirely new products, which can thus be offered to end customers at significantly lower cost than before.
We are also pushing the boundaries of conventional sheet metal processing by testing new materials and using hybrid processes to raise machining quality and component complexity to a new level: We form high-strength sheets such as steel or titanium in our own press. Shorter cycle times and high production volumes with lower tool wear as well as continuous smooth cut components during normal cutting in the progressive die are the goal and subject of various research projects and industrial cooperations.
Our range of services extends from market studies for the exploitation of your products to the design and manufacture of the respective molds and the simulation and execution of systematic test series. In doing so, we combine our interdisciplinary competencies in component design, high-tech tool and mold making, replication process mapping and specialized system assembly.