Ring rolling, as in the new mill starting up at Rotek Inc. in Aurora, OH, are an area of considerable recent process development.
Rotek is an operating unit of Thyssenkrupp and one of North America’s largest manufacturers of slewing bearings, including ball and roller slewing bearings and wire-race slewing bearings.
Precision design and production
Rings are precision-formed and machined products, much in demand for heavy engineering projects like cranes or windmills, to effect slow movement of heavy loads, often in a horizontal plane.
New range of rings
The Rotek project is part of previously unreported, multimillion-dollar expansion involving a new, SMS-built RAW 200/260 machine, producing “midsize diameter” rings.
Another new machine concept will be the RAW 100/80-3000/480 ecompact® radial-axial ring rolling machine, designed and built by SMS and scheduled to start producing rings in September for Forgia Rapida, Bologna, Italy.
As detailed by the developer the machine design centers on electro-hydraulic direct drives that are mounted on the roll shafts, a new approach to drive systems for ring rolling, which SMS contends can reduce energy consumption by up to 40% compared to conventional ring-rolling machines.
The RAW ecompact for Forgia Rapida will replace a smaller machine in operation at Bologna, and will roll rings with diameters up to 3,000 mm and a maximum height of 480 mm. The radial rolling force will be 1,000 kN and the axial force up to 800 kN.
New to the game
More ring capacity
This new, 6,000-mt upsetting and piercing press will be installed by Siempelkamp in 2017 at TK Rothe Erde’s Dortmund Works, replacing a 4,000-mt press. Rothe Erde is an affiliate of Rotek.
Siempelkamp will be responsible for the entire machine and process design. In operation, the slug and the scale will be automatically removed from the ingot, minimizing manual functions. The press will have two swivel arms equipped with hydraulically actuated removal devices. Siempelkamp also will supply service cranes for changing the press punch, and an integrated robotic manipulator to load the ingots into the press.
In addition to supplying all mechanical elements and peripheral systems for the new press, Siempelkamp will apply its Prod-IQ® process control software for production data management and quality control, as well as its DAHMOS production modeling platform.
Being first gives Rotek a head start on the advantages of precision engineering. “By strengthening our capabilities in this critical diameter range, we are better able to provide faster delivery times to customers in the construction equipment as well as oil and gas markets which are vital to our business,” stated Mark Girman, CEO of Thyssenkrupp Rotek.