The fuel rail is a pressure reservoir which feeds fuel injectors with fuel from a high pressure fuel pump, it works in a very demanding environment experiencing high cycle fatigue due to high frequency pressure fluctuation. The Optipress project will innovate fuel rails design by connecting design tools for FEA, distortion prediction and fatigue design to maximise the potential for autonomous design optimization. Further, the process innovation will be based around modelling and software to predict and control heat distortion of parts due to joining process. This will offer significant benefits, reduced process steps, improved part quality, reduced material and reduce waste (scrap). It will create and integrate a new technology that can be used across multiple sectors, such as: Aerospace, Oil & Gas, Automotive, Food and Drink and Power Generation. The partners that will develop Optipress project are Unipart Powertrain Applications (leading provider of fuel systems and engine components to the Automotive Sector), Coventry University and TWI. Prediction of residual stresses/distortion, and optimisation of joining processes to reduce residual stress/distortion is a common requirement for TWI’s clients. Metrology, joining and simulation are areas in which Coventry are developing cross sector expertise.
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