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Forming, shearing and welding metal through impulse manfuacturing has significant advantages, in that short time scales change the fundamental nature of the forming process and short duration impulses can enable much lighter and more agile equipment because large static forces do not need to be resisted. Increased forming limits, reduced springback, low cost tooling and reduced wrinkling are some of the documented advantages of impact forming. Shearing at high speeds has been shown to reduce sliver formation and provide increased dimensional tolerance. There is also a critical velocity above which shearing requires much less energy because of localized deformation along narrow adiabatic shear bands. Welding is a solid state process that allows the joining of dissimilar metals with little to no heat affected zone. A common observation in impact welding has been that the weld zone is stronger than the parent material. The group uses electromagnetic force, vaporizing foil actuators and dielectrics, and pulsed laser as tools for developing short-duration, high-magnitude impulses.
History of Impulse Metalworking
There is a fairly rich history in this area however a true engineering science never developed in the interdisciplinary area of impact metal forming, and most of the papers written were rather antic-dotal . We have an archive of much of this old literature, available to our partner organizations.