Weight Savings by Aluminum Metal Foams: Production, Properties and Applications in Automotive 1999-01-0887
Aluminum metal foams are a newly developed ultra-light weight material with the ability to count for tremendous weight savings, especially in automotive applications. The P/M foaming process allows the production of two different types of components: complex shaped parts and metal foam sandwich panels. Foaming inside a mold can produce complex net-shaped parts. Examples are inserts for bumpers, pillars, or others. The metal foam sandwich process has the main advantage of enabling not only flat panels, but also true 3-dimensional shapes by e.g. deep drawing or other forming processes prior to the foaming. Valuable properties of metal foams for automotive applications are the crush energy absorption behavior and the high stiffness. The presentation reviews the properties of metal foams with respect to automotive applications.