Expanite, the surface hardening specialist, has consulted and advised the students at the RennTeam Uni Stuttgart in identifying and solving some of their challenges with wear on the titanium parts in their racing car.
The Rennteam Uni Stuttgart takes part in the Formula Student racing series, a competition for young engineers across Europe, as well as being involved in other international competitions. Formula Student is an international design competition for students in which teams from around the world construct a single-seated formula vehicle and produce a ready-to-drive prototype, assuming a fictitious design assignment.
The young constructors of the Rennteam Uni Stuttgart are constantly striving to optimise the construction process including the use of materials and spend almost all their time in constructing and testing the cars to prepare for competitions.
To increase the performance including lowering the weight of the race car, the students changed some of the parts to titanium but were faced with problems related to wear parts due to low surface hardness and they decided to contact Expanite for possible solutions.
The Expanite material experts proposed to surface harden the critical titanium parts including parts of the power train, sitting between the differential and the drive shaft with the ExpaniteHard-Ti process. The Expanite hardening makes the use of light-weight titanium parts possible therefore resulting in increased efficiency and significant weight reduction.
ExpaniteHard-Ti is a gas-based interstitial hardening process leaving no coating on the surface and thus nothing that can spall off. The actual hardening zone can be tailored to have a case depth of 10μm - 50μm and surfaces can be post-polished to mirror finish. By applying the ExpaniteHard-Ti process, surface hardness can be increased 8 - 10 times to approximately 1000HV.
“We are thrilled and appreciative about the support we have received by the Expanite expert team. With the guidance and recommendations from Expanite, we are convinced that with the Expanite hardening technology we will experience less or no wear on the titanium parts in our race cars,” said Ignacio Gabilondo from the RennTeam.
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