Lightweight Brake Disc of Aluminum and Cast Iron

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Source: Automobil Industrie post

WÜRZBURG, Germany – Lightweight construction on the chassis has several advantages: improved driving dynamics, lower fuel consumption and greater driving comfort. Saint Jean Industries therefore presented a bi-material brake disc at the lightweight construction summit in Würzburg.

Two-part brake discs with a brake cup made of aluminum or sheet steel and a friction ring made of gray cast iron, ceramic or CFRP materials offer several advantages: less mass, higher braking performance and load capacity, better NVH behavior and heat dissipation. However, connecting the two components and materials is still a complex and costly undertaking. Saint Jean Industries has taken on this problem and, according to Patric Auner, Business Development Manager for Saint Jean Industries in Germany, found a cost-effective solution suitable for series production.

Saint Jean has generated the know-how for the innovation called “Cobadisk” in countless series projects with cast parts for the body, chassis and battery-electric drive systems.

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At Cobadisk, Saint Jean manufactures the aluminum brake cup using the Cobapress process; this includes casting and drop forging plus post-processing. At the same time, the partner Lingotes in Spain produces the one-piece gray cast iron friction ring with pin geometry integrated on the inner ring.

Patented wedding

The brake pot and friction ring are then “married” in a patented process in a joint venture. To do this, both components are first heated and then the “arms” of the brake cup are frictionally flanged around the connecting bolts on the inner radius of the gray cast iron friction ring. This process is fully automated and should take less than 20 seconds. The system is then finished and coated with an anti-corrosion layer.

Due to the radial arrangement of the connecting parts, the thermal expansion of the materials should, according to Auner, only lead to low component stresses and the frictional connection should be maintained. Gray cast iron and aluminum components should consist of standard alloys and be able to be manufactured and processed using known processes. But friction rings made of ceramic or carbon are also compatible with this connection technology.

Compared to a conventional cast iron brake, Saint Jean’s concept can save between one and two kilograms per brake. The exact value also depends on the vehicle size; In principle, “Cobadisk” can be represented for vehicles from the A to the sports car segment.

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