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Technical Paper

A Diamond-Like Carbon Coating for Aluminum Alloy Piston/Bore Application

This paper examines the potential use of diamond-like carbon (DLC) on aluminum alloy pistons of internal combustion engines. Our approach is to apply a DLC coating on the piston running against an aluminum-390 bore thus eliminating the iron liners in a standard piston/bore system. Experimental data, using a pin-on-disk tribometer under unlubricated test conditions, indicate that the performance of the DLC coating against aluminum 390 exhibits superior friction resistance compared to aluminum-390 against cast iron; the latter material couple representing the materials currently being used in production for the piston/bore application. Moreover, by thermally cycling the DLC coatings we show that improved friction and wear properties can he maintained to temperatures as high as 400°C.
Technical Paper

ACuZinc™ 5 Applications in the Auto Industry

ACuZinc™ 5, a GM-patented, high-performance ternary zinc-copper-aluminum alloy which is suitable for manufacturing net shape die castings, plays a vital role in the success of new automotive parts and systems. The new parts were designed to meet the auto industry's higher load and safety specifications. The superior mechanical properties of ACuZinc™ make it suitable for structural applications where commercial zinc die casting alloys have been found to be inadequate. From a business viewpoint, ACuZinc™ can help in penetrating new markets by competing for cast iron, powder metal and brass applications. ACuZinc is a registered GM trademark.
Technical Paper

Bench Test for Scuff Evaluation of Surface Modified Piston and Bore Materials

This paper describes a bench method to evaluate the frictional behavior, under scuffing conditions, of some test coupons of standard materials currently used in making cylinder bores and pistons. The usefulness of this method is in evaluating new materials and coatings that may enable the elimination of iron liners from engine blocks. While investigating the potential application of Plasma Source Ion Implantation (PSII) on engine piston/bore materials, we have systematically studied the scuffing related friction behavior of aluminum 390 alloy and cast iron. A pin-on-disk tribometer is used under dry sliding conditions. Testing parameters for simulating cold scuff in bench tests have been specified. This proposed test method offers a screening tool desirable for the development of PSII technology and may also be useful for the design of other new surface modification techniques.
Technical Paper

Comparative Life Cycle Assessment of Plastic and Steel Vehicle Fuel Tanks

Federal standards that mandate improved fuel economy have resulted in the increased use of lightweight materials in automotive applications. However, the environmental burdens associated with a product extend well beyond the use phase. Life cycle assessment is the science of determining the environmental burdens associated with the entire life cycle of a given product from cradle-to-grave. This report documents the environmental burdens associated with every phase of the life cycle of two fuel tanks utilized in full-sized 1996 GM vans. These vans are manufactured in two configurations, one which utilizes a steel fuel tank, and the other a multi-layered plastic fuel tank consisting primarily of high density polyethylene (HDPE). This study was a collaborative effort between GM and the University of Michigan's National Pollution Prevention Center, which received funding from EPA's National Risk Management Research Laboratory.
Technical Paper

Development of Creep-Resistant Magnesium Alloys for Powertrain Applications: Part 1 of 2

A family of low-cost, creep-resistant magnesium alloys has been developed. These alloys, containing aluminum, calcium, and strontium are designated as “ACX” alloys. Developed for engine blocks and transmissions, the “ACX” alloys have at least 40% greater tensile and 25% greater compressive creep resistance than AE42, and corrosion resistance as good as AZ91D (GMPG 9540P/B corrosion test). These alloys are estimated to cost only slightly more than AZ91D and have as good castability. Creep data up to 200°C, tensile properties at room temperature and 175°C, corrosion results and microstructure analysis are presented and discussed. These alloys have the potential to enable the extension of the substantial weight reduction benefits of magnesium to powertrain components.
Technical Paper

Elevated Temperature Forming of Sheet Magnesium Alloys

The use of sheet magnesium for automobile body applications is limited, in part, due to its low room temperature formability. Elevated temperature forming of magnesium sheet could enable the manufacture of automobile body closure and structural panels to meet vehicle mass targets. The effect of temperature in improving the formability of sheet magnesium has been known since the 1940's; however, automobile applications for sheet magnesium still have been very limited. The present work characterizes the elevated temperature mechanical behavior of commercially available magnesium sheet alloys at temperatures between 300°C and 500°C. The materials are then evaluated using both warm forming and superplastic forming technologies.
Technical Paper

Formability Predictions of Hydroformed AKDQ Steel Tubes by Various Burst Criteria

The accurate prediction of burst of hydroformed tubes is a research area of considerable importance in order to evaluate a design before prototyping. This report applies the presently available criteria (forming limit diagram, stress-based forming limit diagram, extended stress based forming limit curve and the plastic strain criterion) to some of the benchmark examples carried out by the Auto/Steel partnership. It was found that the formability predictions are lowest if the plastic strain criterion is used and highest if either the stress-based criteria are used. Predicted and measured results were also compared.
Technical Paper

Formability of an Automotive Aluminum Alloy-AA5754 CC

We have studied the formability of continuous strip cast (CC) AA5754 aluminum alloy for automotive applications. Strip casting technology can considerably reduce material cost compared with conventional direct chill (DC) cast aluminum sheets. However, the CC material tends to exhibit much less post-localization deformation and lower fracture strains compared with DC sheets with similar Fe content, although both alloys show similar strains for the onset of localization. Bendability of the CC alloy is also found to be inferior. The inferior behavior (post-necking and bendability) of the CC alloy can be attributed to the higher incidence of stringer-type particle distributions in the alloy. The formability of the AA5754 alloy has also been studied using two dimensional microstructure-based finite element modeling. The microstructures are represented by grains and experimentally measured particle distributions.
Technical Paper

New Binder for Casting Cores: An Industrial Application to Safety Suspension Parts

A new core binder system (1) was used to produce foundry cores for casting hollow aluminum suspension parts by the low pressure, gravity flow, semi-permanent mold method. These and other prototype aluminum parts made using the system demonstrate that easy core removal from complex castings, core and sand recycling, and an improved environment in the core making facilities will increase productivity, improve product quality and reduce manufacturing costs.
Technical Paper

Recyclability and Characterization of Co-Extruded Multilayer Fuel Tanks

The recyclability of co-extruded multilayer fuel tanks, and characterization of the materials used in their manufacture, have been investigated. The ethylene-vinyl alcohol, EvOH, copolymer barrier layer, extruded as a sandwich between two adhesive layers of a maleated linear low density polyethylene, LLDPE, is surrounded by three high density polyethylene, HDPE, layers, one of which is composed of the regrind derived from the waste generated by manufacture. Particular attention has been focused on the mechanism of adhesion between the barrier layer and the adhesive layers. Surface analysis of the in situ surfaces has confirmed the formation of chemical bonds between the two polymers. Morphological information, concerning dispersion of the barrier layer in the HDPE matrix during recycling, has been obtained by scanning (SEM) and transmission (TEM) electron microscopy techniques.
Technical Paper

The Influence of the Material Model on the Stress-Based Forming Limit Criterion

The stress-based forming limit criterion has recently been shown to exhibit no significant dependence on strain path for a wide range of materials. This paper describes the effect of material models on the definition of the stress-based forming limit criterion. It is shown that although the shape of the forming limit curve in stress space is sensitive to the type of material model used, the degeneracy of the path dependent strain-based curves to a single curve in stress space shows little sensitivity to the material model. Consequently, the stress based forming limit criterion is shown to provide a more practical and robust measure of forming severity than is possible using the conventional forming limit diagram.