Shape Corp., a global tier-1 supplier roll-forming technology expert for nearly 50 years, announced advancements in the application of complex roll-formed aluminum applications for the automotive industry.
In collaboration with Novelis, a sustainable aluminum solutions provider, Shape can now offer a portfolio of roll-formed aluminum components, including rockers, battery tray crossmembers, roof bows, and other structural members.
Shape engineers have spent years perfecting the method of roll-forming ultra-high strength materials along with researching and developing complex geometries that bring value to structural automotive components. Shape’s new roll-forming technology will use Novelis’ full automotive product line, including fully tempered high-strength 6xxx series aluminum sheet alloys.
Simplifying the OEM assembly process, roll-forming replaces alternative methods that require multiple stampings and time-consuming assembly operations. The roll forming process minimizes the need for secondary operations by forming in higher-strength tempers (maximizing weight savings) with passivation coatings, and with pre-pierced holes and fasteners applied in-line.
Furthermore, the ability to reuse tooling for part length variation increases efficiency and reduces overall investment in production.
“Offering the ability to roll form complex shapes can be a game changer for automotive aluminum components,” says Shape Corp’s product manager Brian Oxley. “By incorporating high-strength 6xxx series aluminum provided by Novelis, we are able to optimize the roll forming process, allowing us to create complex shapes, tight bend radii, and ultimately, more efficient, sustainable, and cost-effective automotive components. This collaboration has opened new possibilities for the industry and reinforced Shape’s and Novelis’ position as leaders in material innovation.”
By leveraging higher material strength levels, Shape engineers have developed a range of automotive applications that demonstrate the full potential of roll formed high-strength steel and aluminum. The collaboration with Novelis has allowed Shape to apply its deep experience in roll forming steel to developing complex roll formed automotive products made of high-strength aluminum sheet.
“Novelis has identified new applications for our 6xxx series high-strength aluminum alloy sheet, which supports the mass production of lighter, low carbon automotive parts,” said Jamie Zinser, VP, global automotive, Novelis. “We are proud to be partnering with Shape at our Customer Solution Center in Novi, Michigan, where our new roll form line will expedite the development and market introduction of these applications.”