UrFU and KUMZ Enhance Production of High-Tech Products


A mobile complex of energy-efficient induction equipment has been launched at the plant

A new mobile complex of energy-efficient induction equipment has been launched at the Kamensk-Uralsky Metallurgical Plant (KUMZ). This innovative technology significantly boosts the productivity and energy efficiency of the press equipment, while also improving the quality of aluminum and aluminum alloy stamped products. These high-tech products are in demand across various leading industries.

The development and implementation of this advanced solution were made possible through close collaboration between the plant and scientists from Ural Federal University (UrFU). University staff quickly completed the technical assignment, developed, designed, manufactured, set up, and launched the new installation.

“The installation allows us to heat the tools much faster and reduce production time,” says Denis Syrchin, head of the forging shop at KUMZ. “Previously, it took 7-8 hours to heat the die. With the new installation, we can do it in less than two hours and set the heating temperature within the required range for stamping. We also need to reconfigure the tools less often, saving significant time and electricity. The installation is mobile, so it can be quickly moved around the shop floor and used on different presses. I want to thank the specialists from UrFU for their breakthrough in induction heating tailored to our needs. I believe these specialists are unmatched in Russia. I have only positive emotions from their work.”

Currently, the final stage of testing the mobile complex in serial stamping production is underway. After this stage, the mobile complex will be put into operation.

“We produce a lot of products by stamping,” says Boris Ovsyannikov, scientific secretary of KUMZ and candidate of technical sciences. “During operation, the tool cools down quickly and needs to be reheated. The new installation allows the press to work continuously for several shifts. Commissioning work has shown that this technology will increase equipment productivity by at least 50% and significantly improve product quality by maintaining a narrow temperature range. A press with such an installation can work for a long time until the entire order volume is completed.”

Ovsyannikov also notes that the plant’s products are very high-tech. The enterprise works with over a hundred different aluminum-based alloys and more than a dozen magnesium-based alloys, with a product range consisting of tens of thousands of items.

“We cannot do without scientific research and the help of scientists who improve the technological process,” emphasizes Ovsyannikov. “Regarding induction technologies, we have been cooperating with Ural Power Engineering Institute of UrFU for over 40 years. The plant has about 150 different furnaces, including induction ones. Equipment created in the last century needs modernization, and we need the help of specialists to upgrade it with the latest scientific achievements.”

Associate Professor Fedor Tarasov from UralENIN UrFU, candidate of technical sciences, highlights that the new installation has a completely independent water-air cooling system, requiring only an electricity supply. The installation is very convenient for use at the plant, easily movable from press to press. This project is easy to scale at any enterprise using exothermic stamping. The innovativeness of the new technology is confirmed by three patents, including a Eurasian one.

According to Tarasov, the project took about eight months to implement. Initially, UralENIN specialists created a three-dimensional mathematical model of the induction heating installation, then developed design documentation, and, after receiving approval from the plant, proceeded to manufacture.

“We received support from the Technological Development Fund of the Sverdlovsk Region, created by the decree of Governor Yevgeny Kuyvashev, and started manufacturing the installation,” notes Tarasov. “The act of commissioning the installation for industrial operation has already been signed. The project was funded by KUMZ, and after the successful commissioning, all costs incurred by the plant were reimbursed by the fund.”

Ural Power Engineering Institute of UrFU has been a reliable partner of KUMZ for many years. KUMZ has a creative partnership with UrFU, based on solving important problems in educational programs and achievements in joint research and development work. Generations of plant workers, including hundreds of university graduates, have contributed to the enterprise’s success, confirming the high level of one of Russia’s leading universities. Among today’s 878 employees with higher education at the plant, 306 are UrFU graduates, including department heads, shop managers, and leading specialists.

Other projects for introducing modern induction technologies into production are in the pipeline. In May, the finishing stand of the new rolling complex will be enhanced with an innovative induction heating installation for the output drum.