09.02.2017 Automotive  Material expertise  New work 

Freudenberg Sealing Technologies receives Innovation Award

New electromagnetic pulsation method for the production of diaphragm accumulators awarded.

Weinheim (Germany). February 9, 2017. Freudenberg Sealing Technologies has won the 2017 Innovation Award of the German state Rhineland-Palatinate with a new electromagnetic pulsation method for the production of diaphragm accumulators. The Rhineland-Palatinate Minister for Economic Affairs, Volker Wissing, presented six companies in five categories at a ceremonial event in Trier (Germany). The Innovation Award Rhineland-Palatinate is one of the oldest innovation awards in Germany and is jointly awarded by the Ministry of Economy, Transport, Agriculture and Viticulture and the working groups of the Chambers of Industry, Commerce and Handicrafts.

Freudenberg - Innovation Award RP 2017

Winner of the 2017 Innovation Award of the German state Rhineland-Palatine, 4th from the right, Thorsten Hillesheim, Technical Director Accumulators, Freudenberg Sealing Technologies.
© mwvlw / Kristina Schäfer

Diaphragm accumulators consist of gas and liquid portions that are separated by a diaphragm. If the pressure rises in the oil circuit, the diaphragm accumulator takes up the liquid. This compresses the gas. If the pressure in the hydraulic system falls, the gas expands and forces the stored liquid back into the oil circuit. Tried-and-tested applications in the auto industry include energy storage in double clutch and automated transmissions, pulsation damping and hydraulic systems for suspension damping. Uses in other industries involve increases in cycle times and the shortening of hoist times in process flows, along with the general storage of hydraulic energy. But these advantages are offset by disadvantages, mainly in the manufacture of diaphragm accumulators. Especially in standard applications with largely low system pressures, the large number of process steps and components leads to higher production costs than necessary.

That's why Freudenberg Sealing Technologies has developed a new approach for the production of diaphragm accumulators – with fewer process steps, the need for fewer components and shorter installation times. Joining the two halves of the aluminum housing – through the use of electromagnetic pulse technology (EMPT) – and filling the gas side with nitrogen are handled in a single step. Electromagnetic pulse forming uses powerful magnetic fields to reform electrically conductive materials without contact. This technology can be used to join the same type of material or different types. Freudenberg Sealing Technologies uses it to create a firm bond between the diaphragm accumulator’s upper and lower shell. The redeveloped process offers high stability and component cleanliness. Thanks to this innovative process and the use of lightweight aluminum, new application options are opening up for diaphragm accumulators, in hydro-pneumatic suspension applications, for example.

Weight reduction of parts and components, especially for the automotive industry, is the focus of Freudenberg Sealing Technologies’ LESS initiative. The acronym stands for "Low Emission Sealing Solutions" and thus for sustainability and environmentally friendly mobility: in engines, transmissions, auxiliary equipment and alternative powertrain concepts such as electric mobility. More information can be found at http://less.fst.com.

More details on diaphragm accumulators from Freudenberg Sealing Technologies are available at https://www.fst.com/products/hydraulic-accumulators-and-suspension-systems.


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