The DUPLEXFIN project (Optimization of duplex stainless-steel hot working for the production of low thickness laminates by means of work hardening), in which titania has participated as a technological partner, has ended.
The scientific-technological objectives achieved are:

1. To study and analyze the values prior to the development of the Project associated with duplex steels during hot rolling and cold rolling to underline and assess possible modifications to be made.

2. To study and analyze the loads, deformations, fragilities and cracks of duplex stainless steels, so that can be achieved points in common for the different types, allowing to focus and address possible modifications to be imposed.

3. To establish a proposal for modification of chemical composition based on previous studies and analysis.
4. To develop and machining new ingots with the new compositions previously proposed to study, observe and define the properties to validate if they have managed to maintain them.

5. To submit the ingots to Gleeble thermomechanical tests, with different values of deformation speed in order to obtain experimental values, and to study and analyze the microstructures resulting from the tests carried out, so that all the necessary data for compilation are obtained.

6. To develop and validate a numerical simulation model of the stress that is generated at the edges of the steel piece during hot rolling, depending on the geometry and conditions of the process.

7. To evaluate, by means of the numerical modelling of stresses in edges, the capacity of the different duplex compositions in terms of their capacity of each to resist them without the occurrence of failure (cracking); finally selecting the one that, within each type of duplex, presents a better behaviour.

8. To manufacture new duplex ingots with optimized compositions from the previous analysis carried out with the numerical modelling of stresses. These materials will be studied to determine the process conditions (thickness reductions, speed, temperature, etc.) with which we obtain the best behaviour in terms of loads and ductility.

9. To develop the reduction of thicknesses experimentally based on the numerical simulations, to analyze the loads and ductility resulted of the ingots.

10. To analyze the microstructures and validate the final process in order to obtain the definitive thicknesses with the optimum properties and with the saving resources, both material and energy.

To face this ambitious challenge, a multidisciplinary consortium composed of 3 companies has been consolidated, with the necessary skills and knowledge to cover the entire value chain of the project:

ACERINOX, one of the most competitive companies in the world in stainless steels manufacturing, and one of the largest manufacturers worldwide in production capacity. Leading this project, it has been responsible for the manufacture and characterization of the new formulations of duplex steels generated by Gleeble and optical and electronic microscopy testing, as well as coordinating the activity of all participants.

TEAMS, a company focused on providing technical support to the industry in the field of materials, mainly by performing mechanical and structural tests and non-destructive inspections. It has participated in the activities of data analysis, as well as the tasks of modification of hot deformation processes.

TITANIA, as an SME company with wide experience in quality control, research and development of materials and industrial processes. Within the project it has been in charge of the analysis of production data for the new formulations proposal, as well as the numerical simulation of the hot rolling process.

The consortium has also had the support of the Association for Research and Industrial Cooperation of Andalusia (AICIA), the Fundació Ctm-Center Tecnològic (CTM) and the University of Cádiz (UCA).
The DUPLEXFIN project is been carried out in Andalusia, and hada budget of around €1.6 M, with an execution period of 36 months, ending on March 2019. Framed in the FEDER Innterconecta 2016 call, it is subsidized by the CDTI and co-financed by the Spanish Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), within the Plurirregional Operational Program of Spain 2014-2020, with the aim of promoting research, technological development and innovation.