Flow drill fastening technology - Atlas Copco Netherlands
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Flow drill technology overview

Learn more about flow drill fastening technology and its benefits for car manufacturing

Contact our experts

Multi-material joints approached from one side

Car body designs are getting more and more sophisticated to lower CO2 emissions and increase crash performance. This leads to more complex manufacturing processes. Multiple materials with different strength properties need to be joined, like high-strength steels, aluminum, castings, magnesium, carbon or plastics. At the same time, limited accessibility and short cycle times within the manufacturing process are a challenge.

Flow drill fastening is an answer to these challenges. This technology offers multi-material joining with single-sided access, using a fastener as both drill and joining element. The fastener is rotated at high speed and pressure to warm up the material. This allows the fastener to push through the material stack, forming the thread in the process – an efficient and flexible joining method. The high-quality system solutions of our K-Flow product line are designed for precise operation in tough manufacturing environments.

Multi-material joining

Flow drill fastening can join multiple layers of different materials

Only single-sided accessibility needed

A strong and reliable joint entered from one side

Reliable process

Best alignment of joining technology, fastener and materials lead to a fast and reliable process

Serviceability

Removable joints enable disassembly for maintenance and repair work

Hybrid joining

By combining flow drill fastening with adhesive bonding, the dynamic joint strength and corrosion resistance are increased

Flow drill fastening process

With the extensive know-how of our joint analysts and process experts, we develop the ideal process parameters for your individual requirements and material combinations.

 
 
The four main stages in the flow drill fastening process
 
The four main stages in the flow drill fastening process
The four main stages in the flow drill fastening process
1. Heating
1. Heating
The fastener is positioned on the workpiece and rotated at high-speed. This heats up the material.
 
The fastener is positioned on the workpiece and rotated at high-speed. This heats up the material.
2. Penetration
2. Penetration
With high rotation speed (up to 9000 rpm) and high process force (up to 3000 N), the fastener is pushed through the materials.
 
With high rotation speed (up to 9000 rpm) and high process force (up to 3000 N), the fastener is pushed through the materials.
3. Thread forming
3. Thread forming
With reduced speed and process force, the fastener drives through the material and forms a thread without cutting.
 
With reduced speed and process force, the fastener drives through the material and forms a thread without cutting.
4. Tightening
4. Tightening
The fastener is tightened with the required final torque.
 
The fastener is tightened with the required final torque.

Learn more about our products and services:

K-Flow system solution
<b>Flow drill fastening process</b>
K-Flow system solution
Learn more about our system components
 
Learn more about our system components
Learn more about our system components
Innovate with us
Flow drill fastening
Innovate with us
We develop customized applications and processes that solve your joining challenge. Learn how we can support you!
 
We develop customized applications and processes that solve your joining challenge. Learn how we can support you!
We develop customized applications and processes that solve your joining challenge. Learn how we can support you!
Discover our service offering
Discover our service offering
Service, training, spare parts and more ...
 
Service, training, spare parts and more ...
Service, training, spare parts and more ...
Self-pierce riveting
Self-pierce riveting
Henrob product line
 
Henrob product line
Industrial dispensing
Industrial dispensing
SCA product line
 
SCA product line