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Title: Development of High-Performance Cast Crankshafts. Final Technical Report

Abstract

The objective of this project was to develop technologies that would enable the production of cast crankshafts that can replace high performance forged steel crankshafts. To achieve this, the Ultimate Tensile Strength (UTS) of the new material needs to be 850 MPa with a desired minimum Yield Strength (YS; 0.2% offset) of 615 MPa and at least 10% elongation. Perhaps more challenging, the cast material needs to be able to achieve sufficient local fatigue properties to satisfy the durability requirements in today’s high performance gasoline and diesel engine applications. The project team focused on the development of cast steel alloys for application in crankshafts to take advantage of the higher stiffness over other potential material choices. The material and process developed should be able to produce high-performance crankshafts at no more than 110% of the cost of current production cast units, perhaps the most difficult objective to achieve. To minimize costs, the primary alloy design strategy was to design compositions that can achieve the required properties with minimal alloying and post-casting heat treatments. An Integrated Computational Materials Engineering (ICME) based approach was utilized, rather than relying only on traditional trial-and-error methods, which has been proven to accelerate alloy development time.more » Prototype melt chemistries designed using ICME were cast as test specimens and characterized iteratively to develop an alloy design within a stage-gate process. Standard characterization and material testing was done to validate the alloy performance against design targets and provide feedback to material design and manufacturing process models. Finally, the project called for Caterpillar and General Motors (GM) to develop optimized crankshaft designs using the final material and manufacturing processing path developed. A multi-disciplinary effort was to integrate finite element analyses by engine designers and geometry-specific casting simulations with existing materials models to optimize crankshaft cost and performance. Prototype crankshafts of the final design were to be produced and validated using laboratory bench testing and on-engine durability testing. ICME process simulation tools were used to investigate a broad range of processing concepts. These concepts included casting orientation, various mold and core materials, and various filling and feeding strategies. Each crankshaft was first simulated without gating and risers, which is termed natural solidification. The natural solidification results were used as a baseline for strategy development of each concept. Casting process simulations and ICME tools were proven to be reasonable predictors of real world results. Potential alloys were developed that could meet the project material property goals with appropriate normalization and temper treatments. For the alloys considered, post-normalization temper treatments proved to be necessary to achieve the desired yield strengths and elongations and appropriate heat treatments were designed using ICME tools. The experimental data of all the alloys were analyzed in combination with ICME tools to establish chemistry-process-structure relations. Several GM small gas engine (SGE) crankshafts were successfully cast in sand molds using two different sprue, runner, gate, riser, chill designs. These crankshafts were cast in two different steel alloys developed during the project, but casting finishing (e.g. riser removal) remains a cost challenge. A long list of future work was left unfinished when this project was unexpectedly terminated.« less

Authors:
 [1]
  1. General Motors, Detroit, MI (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Caterpillar Inc., Mossville, IL (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
Contributing Org.:
Argonne National Laboratory (ANL)
OSTI Identifier:
1349522
Report Number(s):
FINALDOE-Caterpillar-EE0006428
SP0024184, C272048
DOE Contract Number:  
EE0006428
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; 42 ENGINEERING; cast; casting; steel; alloy; crankshaft; material; property; ICME; temper; tensile; yield; elongation; GM; Caterpillar

Citation Formats

Bauer, Mark E. Development of High-Performance Cast Crankshafts. Final Technical Report. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1349522.
Bauer, Mark E. Development of High-Performance Cast Crankshafts. Final Technical Report. United States. doi:10.2172/1349522.
Bauer, Mark E. Fri . "Development of High-Performance Cast Crankshafts. Final Technical Report". United States. doi:10.2172/1349522. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1349522.
@article{osti_1349522,
title = {Development of High-Performance Cast Crankshafts. Final Technical Report},
author = {Bauer, Mark E},
abstractNote = {The objective of this project was to develop technologies that would enable the production of cast crankshafts that can replace high performance forged steel crankshafts. To achieve this, the Ultimate Tensile Strength (UTS) of the new material needs to be 850 MPa with a desired minimum Yield Strength (YS; 0.2% offset) of 615 MPa and at least 10% elongation. Perhaps more challenging, the cast material needs to be able to achieve sufficient local fatigue properties to satisfy the durability requirements in today’s high performance gasoline and diesel engine applications. The project team focused on the development of cast steel alloys for application in crankshafts to take advantage of the higher stiffness over other potential material choices. The material and process developed should be able to produce high-performance crankshafts at no more than 110% of the cost of current production cast units, perhaps the most difficult objective to achieve. To minimize costs, the primary alloy design strategy was to design compositions that can achieve the required properties with minimal alloying and post-casting heat treatments. An Integrated Computational Materials Engineering (ICME) based approach was utilized, rather than relying only on traditional trial-and-error methods, which has been proven to accelerate alloy development time. Prototype melt chemistries designed using ICME were cast as test specimens and characterized iteratively to develop an alloy design within a stage-gate process. Standard characterization and material testing was done to validate the alloy performance against design targets and provide feedback to material design and manufacturing process models. Finally, the project called for Caterpillar and General Motors (GM) to develop optimized crankshaft designs using the final material and manufacturing processing path developed. A multi-disciplinary effort was to integrate finite element analyses by engine designers and geometry-specific casting simulations with existing materials models to optimize crankshaft cost and performance. Prototype crankshafts of the final design were to be produced and validated using laboratory bench testing and on-engine durability testing. ICME process simulation tools were used to investigate a broad range of processing concepts. These concepts included casting orientation, various mold and core materials, and various filling and feeding strategies. Each crankshaft was first simulated without gating and risers, which is termed natural solidification. The natural solidification results were used as a baseline for strategy development of each concept. Casting process simulations and ICME tools were proven to be reasonable predictors of real world results. Potential alloys were developed that could meet the project material property goals with appropriate normalization and temper treatments. For the alloys considered, post-normalization temper treatments proved to be necessary to achieve the desired yield strengths and elongations and appropriate heat treatments were designed using ICME tools. The experimental data of all the alloys were analyzed in combination with ICME tools to establish chemistry-process-structure relations. Several GM small gas engine (SGE) crankshafts were successfully cast in sand molds using two different sprue, runner, gate, riser, chill designs. These crankshafts were cast in two different steel alloys developed during the project, but casting finishing (e.g. riser removal) remains a cost challenge. A long list of future work was left unfinished when this project was unexpectedly terminated.},
doi = {10.2172/1349522},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {2017},
month = {3}
}