Induction Hardened Ductile Iron Camshafts 2002-01-0918
The General Motors L850 world engine uses an induction hardened, ductile iron, camshaft. Unlike most induction hardened camshafts that are machined first and then hardened, this camshaft is deep hardened first and then machined. Using this process, the beneficial compressive surface residual stresses are extremely high.
During the development of the L850 camshaft, the casting process was optimized to produce material of sufficient quality to resist quench cracking during the hardening process and to resist mechanical cracking during the machining process. Retained austenite content, residual stress profiles, hardness, microstructure and chemical composition were all characterized and optimized.
This paper reviews the material and process development for this unique automotive application.