In the research project FlexHyJoin, EDAG Group and nine European partners developed a new hybrid joining process for producing lightweight parts for the automotive industry. This involved the production of weight-optimised combinations of steel and thermoplastic polymer composites in a fully automatic manufacturing cell - without the use of any adhesives or mechanical joining elements during the "fusion" of these extremely different materials.
In terms of cost and production time savings, the advantages of this hybrid joining technology are considerable. In addition, lighter components reduce the carbon dioxide emissions of vehicles, and thus have a positive effect on the environment. In an application demonstrator, a 40 percent weight-saving potential compared to the reference construction method in steel was produced, and the suitability of the FlexHyJoin technology for mass production was demonstrated at the same time.