ULMA, specialists in forging processes
ULMA’s facilities include all the hot forging processes available. With them, we provide a wide range of forged products of diverse materials, mainly serving the energy and general capital goods industries.
At ULMA, we have extensive experience in the following forging processes
- Closed-die forging, with and without burr
- Open-die forging
- Combined forging: open forging with subsequent rolling or hammer forging
- Free forging
These processes are undertaken in each case with forging equipment ideally suited to the characteristics of the process, using our various specialized facilities to cover all different types of products.
At ULMA, we have forging facilities with mechanical presses for closed-die forging processes with and without burr. These are high-productivity, highly automated lines with induction and/or gas heating and integrated hot shearing that serve to heat and cut the billets.
Material handling is automated and/or robotic, with transfer stations at various points in the process, depending on the type of line involved.
We also use either induction heating or gas furnace heating depending on whether the material to be forged is a carbon steel (heated by induction) or not. If the material is stainless or duplex (which includes nickel alloys) or a superalloyed nickel-based steel, it is heated in a gas furnace.
ULMA has mechanical presses from 1,000 to 8,000 t with production capacities of up to 10,000 kg/h.
The hammer facilities for closed die forging processes with and without burr are notable for their flexibility, and for the wide range of products and materials they can forge, specializing in short and medium runs.
Each of our hammer forging lines has auxiliary mechanical or hydraulic presses available for pre-forming, deburring, etc.
These lines have an average level of automation, as their function is mainly to produce short runs and provide flexibility in terms of logistics. Each line is fully prepared for this, with rotary furnaces and chamber furnaces for gas heating of the material to be forged and forging manipulators for the movement of the pieces between the different phases of the process.
Open-die forging and combined forging
Hydraulic Press + Rolling Mill
In order to be able to forge using open-die forging followed by rolling, we have a forging setup with a hydraulic press and a radial-axial rolling mill. The purpose is to obtain a laminated flange or a laminated ring or hoop, shaping an external or internal profile at the same time.
These are fully automated, high-productivity facilities, where the process is monitored from the cold shearing of the bars with a rotary or band saw, through the heating of the blocks in the gas rotary furnace, onward to the forging of the preform in the hydraulic press and finally to rolling in the radial-axial rolling mill.
All the handling movements between the different stages of the process are performed by three automatic manipulators, with furnaces for heat recovery prior to the final rolling.
Hydraulic press for free forging
At ULMA, we also have free-forging equipment for short runs or single units that exists to provide excellent service to our customers as part of the range of operations one would expect from a company of our capacity.
Among the operations we can offer are:
- upset forging,
- various types of forming in stages, such as stepped shafts, and
- any “artisanal” process that our customers require.
The type of press used at ULMA for free forging is hydraulic, especially adapted to operate in combination with an ad hoc manipulator, as is necessary for this process.
The range of products and materials that we can offer is wide and varied, owing to the diversity of operations that can be carried out with this equipment, such as stepped shafts, discs, rings, etc.
We can also offer pre-formed or pre-grinding products for the whole range of material qualities that we forge in our other facilities and which are aimed at various industries: energy, capital goods, machine construction…ULMA has acquired and developed these technologies as a strategy to adapt to current market needs. In this way, it satisfies the demand for the different production requests coming from the market: short delivery times and batches, cost savings, increased competitiveness, and a wide range of products in terms of the type of part and materials used.