The focus of the research in joining by deformation is on questions relating to the joining of lightweight construction materials, such as fibre reinforced plastics or wrought aluminium alloys, both as joints using purely deformation and in combination with adhesive bonding. The main fields of application for the joining methods in question are automotive and aircraft industry.
The research covers both the initial qualification of the deformation or setting process of the joint and the analysis of the load-bearing capacity of the joint under static and cyclic loading and in the event of a crash. A particular focus here is on the fracture-mechanical evaluation of the joints with respect to crack initiation, crack propagation and fracture behaviour. Furthermore, the properties of the joints are analysed over the service life, and topics such as corrosion resistance, leak tightness, electrical conductivity or the possibilities of (non-destructive) testing are examined.
The focus of the research into forming by plastic deformation centres on fundamental questions of forming and deformation of component structures. The main emphasis here is on the development of prediction models and the derivation of process control concepts for cold and hot plastic forming, predominantly for the forming of large steel plates with material thicknesses of more than 5 mm. These have to be evaluated and optimised with respect to their real-time capability for integration into machine control systems.