Skip Navigation

Roll forming: simulation technology for optimized processing – now also with bluemint® Steel

Roll forming

thyssenkrupp Steel is placing its expertise in roll forming on a broader basis. In addition to investing in additional simulation technology, the range of materials was also expanded in 2023. CO2-reduced bluemint® brand climatic steel is now also available to customers.

Roll-profiled slit strips are used in a wide variety of applications. For example, in the automotive, electrical or furniture industries. Among other things, this involves very application-specific rail elements. These are needed in vehicles for the construction of seats, for example, and are also used in the production of ovens or in the furniture segment for drawer systems of all kinds. In addition, the importance of roll forming in the field of renewable energies is increasing. Here, roll-formed slit strips are used, among other things, for support structures in solar farms. To further develop the rollforming offering and build up additional advisory capabilities for customers, thyssenkrupp Steel has invested in this area at various points. This starts at the material level, where scalur®+Z steel in particular has proved its worth as a material. This is a hot-dip galvanized flat product with extremely narrow thickness tolerances which stands for maximum cost-efficiency in component production.

For the first time, customers are now also being offered scalur®+Z as a climate-friendly bluemint® variant. The advantage: by using the CO2-reduced climate steel, customers can count the reductions achieved in production towards their Scope 3 emissions and offer their customers more sustainable products. And they can do so without restrictions, as there is no change to the production routes, the outstanding product quality and the proven processing procedures. In addition, thyssenkrupp has invested in new simulation tools around roll forming. "The computer-aided processes provide designers with information on, for example, which geometries are feasible and how thick or strong a material needs to be for the planned further processing and production properties," explains Roger Hannig, Team Leader Technical Customer Support SSC automotive at thyssenkrupp Steel. And all this without having to carry out time-consuming and costly real-life tests prior to practical use.

Precise material characteristic values required

Thorsten Beier und Roger Hannig

Steffen Jaekel, development team leader at furniture hardware manufacturer Hettich, which sources its materials – including most recently sustainable scalur®+Z in bluemint® quality – from, among others, the steel service center Flachstahl Werl of thyssenkrupp Steel, explains why these characteristic values are so important: "In order to optimize our products, we need to know exactly how a material behaves under certain conditions. In order to simulate this reliably, we need, above all, precise material characteristic values. This is the only way we can guarantee the process accuracy in production that is crucial for our business." After all, as a renowned supplier to the kitchen industry, Hettich cannot afford any errors. The company's customers include well-known brand-name manufacturers, some of which deliver more than 5,000 kitchens per week. Ten or more drawer and runner systems designed by Hettich per kitchen quickly add up – high-quality and precisely processed materials are the be-all and end-all.

Signed: Memorandum of Understanding on the supply of CO2-reduced steel.

Signed: Memorandum of Understanding on the supply of CO2-reduced steel.

Development partner for many years

Trio of experts: Roger Hannig from thyssenkrupp Steel, Sascha Zimmermann, Sales Manager at Flachstahl Werl, and Steffen Jaekel, team leader for development at Hettich (from l.)
Trio of experts: Roger Hannig from thyssenkrupp Steel, Sascha Zimmermann, Sales Manager at Flachstahl Werl, and Steffen Jaekel, team leader for development at Hettich (from l.)

Hettich's optimized and efficient production processes owe much to the characteristic values for simulation generated at thyssenkrupp Steel. A circumstance to which the traditional family business from Kirchlengern itself has contributed a great deal. Both companies have been working together for many years in the field of materials analysis and product development. Specialist departments, simulation teams and materials professionals are in close contact. "Some time ago, we were struggling with cracks in the material of our drawer guides in the rails," recalls Steffen Jaekel. To find out the reason, Hettich and thyssenkrupp Steel set up targeted joint analysis processes at that time.

In the course of this, it was first possible to find the cause of the problems, which were then later successfully rectified. The project was the prelude to the cooperation that continues to this day and benefits all parties involved. Jaekel: "The cooperation – and in particular the determination of characteristic values at thyssenkrupp Steel – gives us a better calculation basis for product development. That has helped us enormously. Even though we at Hettich have positioned ourselves very well in terms of simulation over the past ten years: We don't have the capabilities of thyssenkrupp Steel with its gigantic test lab like this."

The trend towards higher-strength materials reflects the increasing demands on roll-formed components. As the strength of the material increases, so does the process complexity of producing highly dimensionally accurate components. To this end, we support our customers with our products and our know-how. We look forward to hearing from you.

Thorsten Beier from the Application Technology department at thyssenkrupp Steel

Working together: All good things come in threes

Thorsten Beier
Thorsten Beier from the Application Technology department at thyssenkrupp Steel

An additional competitive advantage for Hettich's roll-formed telescopic rails is the fact that the slit strip supplier Flachstahl Werl (FSW-Industrials) means another partner is involved in the process chain at an early stage. FSW divides the supplied steel into narrow strips for subsequent processing, thus forming an important link between steel production and subsequent finishing. "Because we are in continuous close coordination with thyssenkrupp Steel with regard to Hettich's special requirements, we can provide highly specific slit strip products at the time of delivery that differ in quality from conventional products," explains Sascha Zimmermann, sales manager at Flachstahl Werl. Zimmermann continues: "This three-way constellation, in which thyssenkrupp Steel, FSW and Hettich work hand in hand, has proven its worth and developed successfully in recent years. Last but not least, this also benefits the furniture industry's end customers."

General inquiry


** Mandatory


thyssenkrupp Steel Europe AG

Kaiser-Wilhelm-Strasse 100

47166 Duisburg, Germany

+49 (0)203 52-0

To the top