Beckwood Press Company has been awarded a contract by the United States Army Natick Soldier Research, Development & Engineering Center (NSRDEC) to produce a custom 1,000-ton hydraulic press. The press will be used to join ballistic composites in a compression molding application.
With a 36 in. x 36 in. forming area, programmable active leveling control (ALC) and quick die-change features, the new press will be flexible enough to support NSRDEC’s research and development efforts. Beckwood’s proprietary multi-axis ALC system uses a high-speed motion controller, linear transducers and proportional valves to synchronize the press’ actuators and maintain bed-to-ram parallelism despite off-center loading.
Beckwood will manufacture two sets of plates in addition to the main bed and ram bolsters for additional forming flexibility. The first set will offer steam-heating capability. The second will offer electrical-heating capability with temperatures up to 600° F. When the heated plates are not in use, Beckwood’s intuitive control system will regulate the temperature settings within NSRDEC’s existing steam-heated and electrically-heated tooling. Four water modulation valves and four air purge valves will also be provided for rapid cooling.
Like all Beckwood presses, the structure will be designed to the Infinite Life classification using Finite Element Analysis (FEA) software. The computer-aided simulation mirrors real-world manufacturing stresses and ensures that the press is robust enough to handle the most taxing applications. Beckwood’s PressLink remote support module offers fast, complimentary troubleshooting and facilitates program updates without the need for an on-site service visit.