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Improve your component or assembly with the Iskra ISD Research & Development team.

The world's greatest innovations are born out of great challenges.

And we are here to help you develop the best solutions for them. From the sketch to the final product. The Iskra ISD design and engineering team offers comprehensive research and development for your product and assembly needs.

We support our customers through our extensive experience and know-how in all development phases: from initial prototyping and product development to product optimisation and cost reduction of your components.

Research & Development

Moldflow simulations

A strong numerical approach gives us a headstart on identifying potential problems before they become reality.

Within our R&D department, we internally perform high standard moldflow analyses for both plastic and aluminium components. The combined knowledge from both areas is crucial for the co-development or full development of hybrid solutions in the continually demanding automotive market. Our main advantage is our internal back-loop validation system, where every crucial simulation is also experimentally validated with our production process. Having a strong internal numerical approach is important not only for a modern, iterative and systematic product development process but also to minimise potential quality related issues within the tool design stage.

Plastic injection moulding

Moldflow simulations for plastic injection moulding are performed in the latest version of Moldex3D, which is a specialised numerical tool generally used for reinforced technical plastics. We are primarily experienced with simulating technical plastics that are used “under-the-hood”; e.g. PA6, PA66, PA46, PPS, PBT, PP, TPE, TPU and other similar compounds. Additionally, we also internally perform moldflow analyses for thermosets but within a limited range due to the lack of high-quality material cards.
Apart from runner and cooling channel design optimisation, we are generally focused on fibre orientation analysis, weld line quality control, entrapped air analysis, filling pattern uniformity and warpage reduction.

Moldflow simulations

Aluminium HPDC

Moldflow simulations for Aluminium HPDC are performed in the latest version of Magmasoft. We are primarily experienced with simulating alloys 226, 230, 231 and 239.
Our main focus is the shot design optimisation and minimisation of quality related issues, such as gas and shrinkage porosity. Apart from the product and the overall shot design, we also conduct comprehensive analysis of the cooling channel layout and the general tool temperature management system, which is one of the main challenge points in production of HPDC parts.

Product prototyping

Theory without experimental validation doesn't get you very far, therefore we put strong emphasis on quick prototyping methods.

Our general flexibility is not only limited to our production but is also implemented in our R&D approach. Since our primary focus is complex technical components that normally require an extensive numerical and experimental validation approach, we offer the design and production of prototype parts.

For small scale prototype production, we can 3D print components by using our in-house Stratasys F170 3D printer that enables the use of ABS, PLA, ASA, TPE and other thermoplastics.

Also, other prototype technologies can be outsourced (e.g. metal 3D printing) if agreed with the customer.

Product prototyping

Product development

Having a wide design-to-manufacture background enables us to reduce the required development time of designing new solutions.

Our main expertise comes from combining our internal production technologies. The accumulated know-how from the past 70+ years offers an excellent basis for customer-defined product development through our internal design-to-manufacture approach.
Aside from moldflow analyses for plastic and aluminium components that offer us great support during the design development and feasibility improvement loop, both internally and externally, we also perform other supporting numerical analysis that are crucial for mechanically loaded structural parts.

CAE analyses

Development of hybrid components requires a comprehensive, iterative and systematic numerical approach where we continually analyse the internal stress levels due to the external acting loads and the residual stress levels that can result from the production process itself (e.g. injection moulding). With the main aim of using the minimum amount of required material to reach the desired function, these two numerical fields need to be tightly connected and well understood. Additionally, structural analysis is crucial for the co-development of load-carrying parts while designing a manufacturable product.

Lifecycle and functional testing

Not only numerical validation but also control of a component or product lifetime requires practical experiments, where the product undergoes customised and function-specific testing. Both internally or together with our external partners, we are able to develop, design and produce experimental equipment and perform the required tests. We are experienced with static tests, fatigue tests, dynamic tests (e.g. modal analysis, sine-sweep analysis…) and specialised functional tests, depending on the product requirements and field of use.

Product development

Product optimisation

We are focused on reducing production costs through our internal design optimisation approach.

With the sustainability aspect being one of the main customer requirements over the last years, our main aim during the product optimisation stage is to minimise the amount of material used to reach the required component function. While doing so, we also consider other constraints, such as the production process itself, part quality (e.g. warpage) requirements and product lifetime expectation. This internally developed supporting approach has proven to be crucial during the rise of e-mobility and also other sectors where weight reduction and the resulting production cost savings requirements have reached new industry heights.

  • Design simplification

    Product design itself is the main source of potential manufacturability and quality related issues. Based on our experience, more than 80% of all production issues can be sourced back to the part design. Therefore, the main attention in terms of the overall feasibility is placed on part simplification, which can lead to simpler production tools (injection moulding, aluminium HPDC) or to quicker and less time consuming machining (CNC machining and turning). Apart from production simplifications, quality related issues need to be solved with appropriate geometry modifications prior to the design-freeze stage.

  • Technology optimisation

    Final product quality tweaks can be reached through optimisation of the manufacturing process. This doesn't only include parametric optimisation of the process conditions, but also the selection of the appropriate tool materials for either machining or moulding operations. At Iskra ISD, we are experienced with the latest tool steel alloys (e.g. improved heat conductivity steel) and PVD coatings that enable us to solve the most demanding technical challenges of the current industry needs.

  • Material selection

    Appropriate material selection that not only fulfils the short term, but also long-term product requirements can be a daunting task. Through our established development partnerships with our material suppliers, we can guide you through the process of the appropriate polymer selection, Al alloys selection, shaft material selection or the correct electroplating method and coating type selection. The combined knowledge of our production technologies has proven to be a vital advantage for hybrid and other complex technical parts.

Product optimisation

Research fields

To stay competitive, we are extending our research into strategic fields that will rise in importance in the next 5 - 10 years.

Our internally defined research fields follow Iskra ISD's general strategy of developing and producing the technically most demanding hybrid solutions. With the research that we conduct together with our academic partners, we primarily develop new ways of fusing materials with no chemical adhesion. The continually higher requirements for efficiency of material use have also led us to co-developing new aluminium alloys and polymer compounds with improved specific strength that we offer to our customers. Additionally, to follow the sustainability requirements set by the EU, we also heavily invest in co-developing new anti-corrosion coatings that are based on environmentally friendly technologies.

  • Fusion of materials with no chemical adhesion

    Reaching a multifunctional solution through several complex assembly stages is the approach of yesterday. Today, we combine the benefits of different materials by going hybrid. This means that we combine different material types (metals and polymers) through sequential production processes while avoiding extra assembly steps. This approach leads to combining materials with different thermal expansion coefficients, chemical structures and mechanical properties. Apart from classical bonding methods (plasma treatment, gluing…), we primarily focus on methods that require no additional chemical bonding adhesives.

  • Development of new materials

    Together with our material suppliers and academic partners, we are able to prepare custom material solutions, designed and adjusted to your specific needs. For extreme operating conditions and external loads, off-the-shelf solutions are often insufficient or can be oversized. In such cases, we prepare specially tailored solutions that follow your specific product needs.

  • Development of new coatings

    Traditional electroplating methods have been used for a long time, and they will most likely remain active for years to come. However, at Iskra ISD we think ahead. New European regulations that require a sustainable and eco-friendly approach have additionally motivated us to co-develop and industrialise new cutting edge coating methods that are based on completely different production technologies.

Research fields

Innovation

Staying inside a comfort zone is of no interest to us, since innovation is our driving force for thinking ahead.

Innovation is the basis for developing or implementing new technologies or design solutions. Our innovation motto is “less is more”. Within the innovation system, we primarily tackle new industrial solutions of combining components without additional assembly steps or connecting elements (e.g. bolts, sealings, nuts, washers, bushes…).

At Iskra ISD, being innovative means using smart design and technology solutions that lead to an overall reduction of assembly parts and assembly steps.

Innovation

Our academic partners

The era of being an all-in-one expert is over, therefore we connect with top tier experts from relevant fields to increase our core competences and add new ones.

The era of being an all-in-one expert is over. No individual but only a strong team of experts in their respective fields can lead to top tier competitive industrial solutions. Therefore, at Iskra ISD we developed strong and long-term relations with external development and academic partners who can support us with the latest up-to-date research and help us industrialise academic breakthroughs to fulfil current industry needs.

Contacts

Luka Bertoncelj
Research and Development Manager

E luka.bertoncelj@iskra-isd.si
T +386 4 20 76 885

More contacts
Contacts