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Dokumentenidentifikation EP1681112 31.08.2006
EP-Veröffentlichungsnummer 0001681112
Titel Verfahren zur Herstellung eines inaktiven ballistischen Übungselements sowie ein nach diesem Verfahren hergestelltes inaktives ballistiches Element
Anmelder I.M.Z. S.p.A., Zane, IT
Erfinder ILLESI, Giuliano, 36030, SARCEDO (VI), IT
Vertreter derzeit kein Vertreter bestellt
Vertragsstaaten AT, BE, BG, CH, CY, CZ, DE, DK, EE, ES, FI, FR, GB, GR, HU, IE, IS, IT, LI, LT, LU, LV, MC, NL, PL, PT, RO, SE, SI, SK, TR
Sprache des Dokument EN
EP-Anmeldetag 17.01.2006
EP-Aktenzeichen 061004818
EP-Offenlegungsdatum 19.07.2006
Veröffentlichungstag im Patentblatt 31.08.2006
IPC-Hauptklasse B21K 21/06(2006.01)A, F, I, 20060621, B, H, EP
IPC-Nebenklasse F42B 8/22(2006.01)A, L, I, 20060621, B, H, EP   B21K 21/12(2006.01)A, L, I, 20060621, B, H, EP   

Beschreibung[en]

This invention relates to a method for manufacturing an inert ballistic element used for military training purposes and to an inert ballistic element manufactured according to said method.

It is known that the term "ballistic element" in its most general sense is used to denote any object propelled by firearms or released by self-propelled objects such as missiles, rockets or aircrafts.

It is also known that inert ballistic elements, that is to say, without explosive charge, are used during training or testing manoeuvres to simulate attacks on a target in order to study the ballistic behaviour of the ballistic element without having exploding parts.

The description below refers to a specific type of inert ballistic element consisting of an inert bomb body that is used during training manoeuvres and is dropped from aircrafts.

It will, however, be understood that the invention as described herein may be extended to any other type of inert bomb body and, more generally, to any type of inert ballistic element.

As known, current aircraft bombs substantially reproduce four bomb models manufactured to American standards and identified by the abbreviations MK-81-82-83-84, respectively.

These bombs may be active, that is to say, filled with explosive material, for use in military operations, or inert, that is to say, filled with inert material, used in training or testing.

In both cases, aircraft bombs consist of a bomb body with a fin assembly applied to the tail end and a nose applied to the front end.

In prior art, inert bomb bodies, while differing in their specific realization features, all basically consist of a main hollow body with a nose at the front and a tail ring at the back.

Inside the main hollow body an inert ballast is disposed, consisting of a mixture containing mainly cement, whose purpose is to give the bomb body the same ballistic properties as those of active bomb bodies.

In particular, the main hollow body is made in one or more parts by hot forging a metal tubular element.

This machine process gives the main hollow body the tapered shape required by design specifications which guarantees, also through a gradual variation in wall thickness of the main hollow body, required position of the centre of gravity, of required moment of inertia and of the other ballistic properties.

The main hollow body is then filled with a single inert material, usually a mixture of cement, which, once solidified, forms a single block with the body, so that the body itself has the same weight and ballistic properties as the equivalent active bomb bodies used in military operations.

In particular, the main hollow body of the inert bomb bodies is the same as that used for active bomb bodies which are different from the inert bomb bodies exclusively in the explosive nature of filling material.

Once the main hollow body has been filled through the opening at its back, the opening is closed by a flange screwed to the tail ring.

The outside surface of the bomb body also has the housings for the rings by which the bomb body is suspended from the aircraft.

Prior art bomb bodies of the above type have, however, several well-known disadvantages.

A first disadvantage is that used bomb bodies of this kind cannot be recycled because it is impossible to economically separate the main hollow body made of metal from the cement filling material used to give the inert bomb body the same ballistic properties of those of the active bombs.

As a result, once used the inert bomb bodies known cited must be disposed of in suitable landfills or dedicated sites without recycling and reusing the metal material which the main hollow body is made of, thus increasing operating costs and polluting the environment.

Another well-known drawback is the complexity of the construction process and the length of time needed to fill the main hollow body with the inert cement materials.

More specifically, the cement material, after being filled into the main hollow body, must be allowed to stand for a predetermined length of time so that it can set and become solid.

This invention has for its object to overcome the above mentioned disadvantages.

A first aim of the invention is to provide an inert ballistic element, in particular an inert aircraft bomb body used for training purposes, that is easy and economical to recycle so that the metal material of which it is made can be reused and so that the used ballistic elements do not have to be disposed of in special landfills or dedicated sites.

Another aim of the invention is to provide an inert ballistic element, in particular an inert aircraft bomb body used for training purposes, that simplifies prior art construction technology, making the process for manufacturing the ballistic element quicker and easier.

Yet another aim of the invention is to provide an inert ballistic element which possesses all the ballistic properties of an equivalent ballistic element loaded with explosive, that is to say, which has the same weight, length, shape, centre of gravity and substantially the same moment of inertia.

The above mentioned aims are achieved by an inert ballistic element, the features of which are according to Claim 1.

The invention also relates to the method for manufacturing an inert ballistic element, said ballistic element having a hollow body with a central portion of essentially constant diameter, a tapering nose end and a tapering tail end that is slightly smaller in diameter than the diameter of the central portion of said hollow body, where said method, as defined in Claim 1, comprises the steps of:

a)
preparing a heavy thickness cylindrical tube made of steel whose outside diameter is substantially the same as the diameter of the central portion of said ballistic body and which has a shorter length than the length of said ballistic body, where the thickness of said tube is in relation with said outside diameter with the ratio equal or greater than 0,07;
b)
heating one end of said tube at least until it is red hot and for a length at least equal to the length of the tail portion;
c)
picking up said heated tube using a manipulator; and
d)
clamping the unheated end to a chuck on a forging machine;
e)
causing said chuck to rotate and pushing said chuck with said heated tube in the direction of the axis of rotation, into a tail end forging mould that is divided into at least two shells;
f)
simultaneously with step e), activating said forging machine in order to impart to each of said shells of said tail end forging mould an opposite reciprocating motion so as to repeatedly beat said heated tube during the advancing of said tube in the mould until it has the shape defined by said tail end mould;
g)
releasing said shaped tube from said chuck;
h)
heating said tube at least until it is red hot on the opposite side of the shaped tail end and for a length at least equal to the length of the nose end;
i)
repeating steps c) and d);
l)
causing the chuck to rotate and starting to push said chuck with said heated tube in the direction of the axis of rotation, into a nose end forging mould that is divided into at least two shells;
m)
simultaneously with step l), activating said forging machine in order to impart to each of said shells of said nose forging mould an opposite reciprocating motion so as to repeatedly beat said heated tube during the advancing of said tube in the mould until it has the shape defined by said nose end mould;
n)
unloading the finished element.

The invention also protects the ballistic element made according to the method just described.

Advantageously, according to the invention, the method of hot forging a thick tube allows to provide a finished element without any ballast element.

The finished element therefore consists of a single material, preferably steel, and it has the same weight, shape and other ballistic properties of a ballistic element of equivalent size and explosive charge.

It is obvious, therefore, that the ballistic element according to the invention, once used, can be easily recycled since there is no problem to separate different materials because said element is made of one material only.

Further aims and advantages will become more apparent below from the description of the method for manufacturing the ballistic element according to the invention, with reference to the accompanying drawings, where:

  • Figure 1 is a cross section of the ballistic element to be made using the method according to the invention showing the element without the fin assembly at the tail end and the tip at the nose end;
  • Figure 2 is a cross section of the thick tube to be processed by hot forging;
  • Figure 3 schematically illustrates the working range of the two moulds used to carry out the method according to the invention;
  • Figure 4 schematically illustrates the step of forging the tail end of the ballistic element;
  • Figure 5 schematically illustrates the step of forging the nose end of the ballistic element.

As already mentioned, the object of the invention is to provide an inert ballistic element of the type shown in Figure 1, denoted in its entirety by the numeral 1. The ballistic element according to the invention has a central portion 10 of essentially constant diameter, a front portion, also called nose, indicated by 11, with a highly tapered diameter, and a tail portion, indicated by 12, that is slightly smaller in diameter than the diameter of the central portion.

In the method according to the invention, the ballistic element indicated by 1 is made from a steel tube shown in cross section in Figure 2 whose thickness "s" is greater than the thickness of the ballistic element of the same size and weight which is used loaded with explosive.

Obviously, the purpose of the greater thickness is to compensate for the weight of the lacking explosive so that the inert ballistic element has exactly the same shape, weight and other ballistic properties such as centre of gravity and moment of inertia as the equivalent, loaded ballistic element.

The outside diameter "D" of the tube 2 is substantially the same as the diameter of the central body 10 of the finished ballistic element to be made.

The tube is slightly shorter in length "L" than the ballistic element to be made, illustrated in Figure 1.

The thickness "s" of the tube 2 is in relation with the diameter "D" with the ratio equal or greater than 0,07.

The method proposed by the invention is based on the hot forming of the tube 2 carried out in two successive stages by forging.

The forging in two different stages regards each of the two ends of the tube and an essentially central portion of the tube.

Each forging process requires two different moulds, one for forming the tail end and one for forming the nose end.

In the embodiment being described, each mould consists of two half shells which, when closed, reproduce a part of the shape of the ballistic element to be made. However, each mould might be made in three or more parts.

More specifically, as shown in Figure 3, the forging mould 3 is divided into two parts 3A and 3B which forge the tail end and part of the central body 10 of the ballistic element.

The forging mould 4, on the other hand, is used to forge the nose end and another part of the central body 10 and, like the mould 3, is also divided into two parts 4A and 4B.

Once the tube 2 of the required length and thickness has been prepared, a section of said tube, including the end that has to be shaped by forging, is heated.

For heating a section of the tube, for example the section 2A, a customary induction heating system may be used.

A heating system of this type makes it possible to focus the heat on a well-defined part of the steel cylindrical tube, making it become red hot very quickly.

However, other known heating methods may be also used, for example the heating by flame obtained from combustion of natural gas or of LPG or of other combustibles.

Once the required tube section has been heated, the unheated end of the tube, in this case, the end belonging to the section 2B of the tube, is placed, with the aid of a manipulator not shown in the drawings, in a chuck 5 forming part of a forging machine.

Said chuck 5, as shown in Figure 4, clamps the end 2B of the tube 2 between its jaws and is then made to rotate.

The forging machine used, which is not shown in the drawings, is equipped with proper hydraulic pushers which enable the chuck 5 to exert pressure on the tube 2, in such a way that the latter is gradually forced between the two half-shells 3A and 3B of the mould 3 in direction F.

The two half-shells 3A and 3B are connected to the hammers of the forging machine which imparts to said two halves of the mould an opposite reciprocating motion in such a way as to repeatedly beat the outside heated tube section 2A.

While the tube is being hammered, the chuck 5 continues to push the end 2A of the tube 2 until it reaches the end 31 of the two half-shells of the mould 3.

As it pushes the tube into the mould 3, the chuck 5 rotates continuously so that the shape imparted to the tube is perfectly symmetrical about its axis of rotation.

When the first forging operation has been completed, the two parts 3A and 3B of the mould are opened, the partially forged tube 2 is removed and its shaped tail end allowed to cool down.

The partially shaped tube 2 is now processed again and the end of it opposite the shaped tail end, that is to say, the section 2B that will form the nose end, is heated until it becomes red hot.

A suitable manipulator now positions the shaped tail end corresponding to the tube section 2A between the jaws of the chuck 5, as shown in Figure 5.

The second forging operation is now performed in much the same way as the one carried out to shape the tail end of the ballistic element.

Thus, the chuck 5 is made to rotate and to push the tube into the nose mould which is also divided into two shells 4A and 4B connected to the hammers of the forging machine.

The shells 4A and 4B, like those of the first mould, are made to reciprocate in such a way as to beat the tube section 2B to be forged while the tube is being advanced towards the end 41.

When the end of the tube 2 has reached the end position 41 of the mould 4, the ballistic element is fully formed.

The ballistic element in its final form and with a thickness made variable by the forging process is thus completed.

However, the shape, weight, centre of gravity and moment of inertia of the ballistic element are identical to the shape, weight, centre of gravity and moment of inertia of a ballistic element of the same shape and size but loaded with explosive.

To make the finished element ready for use, once having fitted it with the necessary fastening means, it will be sufficient to apply to the ballistic element a so called "tail fin assembly" at the back end of it and a "tip" to close the hole of the nose.

Experts in the trade will no doubt appreciate that a finished element as described and made using the method according to the invention is particularly advantageous since it permits quick and easy recovery of the material from which said ballistic element is made, which can thus be recycled and re-used.

Indeed, since it is made from a single material, all that has to be done is to melt the material and then use it to make another tube to be forged.

An inert ballistic element identical to the one described above will also be obtained if the nose end is heated and forged before the tail end, that is to say, if the order of the forging operations described above is reversed.


Anspruch[en]
An inert ballistic element (1) characterised in that it presents only one body made starting from a cylindrical tube the thickness (s) of which is in relation with the outside diameter (D) of said tube with the ratio equal or grater than 0,07. The inert ballistic element (1) according to claim 1) characterised in that its shape, size, weight, centre of gravity and moment of inertia are the same as a ballistic element having the same shape, size, weight, centre of gravity and moment of inertia loaded with explosive. The method for manufacturing an inert ballistic element (1), said ballistic element having a hollow body with a central portion (10) of essentially constant diameter, a tapering nose end (11) and a tapering tail end (12) that is slightly smaller in diameter than the diameter of the central portion of said hollow body, where said method comprises the steps of: a) preparing a heavy thickness cylindrical tube (2) made of steel whose outside diameter (D) is substantially the same as the diameter of the central portion of said ballistic body and which has a shorter length (L) than the length of said ballistic body, where the thickness (s) of said tube is in relation with said outside diameter (D) with the ratio equal or greater than 0,07; b) heating one end of said tube at least until it is red hot and for a length at least equal to the length of the tail portion; c) picking up said heated tube using a manipulator; and d) clamping the unheated end (2B) to a chuck (5) on a forging machine; e) causing said chuck to rotate and pushing said chuck with said heated tube in the direction of the axis of rotation, into a tail end forging mould (3) that is divided into at least two shells (3A, 3B); f) simultaneously with step e), activating said forging machine in order to impart to each of said shells of said tail end forging mould an opposite reciprocating motion so as to repeatedly beat said heated tube during the advancing of said tube in the mould until it has the shape defined by said tail end mould; g) releasing said shaped tube from said chuck; h) heating said tube at least until it is red hot on the opposite side of the shaped tail end and for a length at least equal to the length of the nose end; i) repeating steps c) and d); l) causing the chuck to rotate and starting to push said chuck with said heated tube in the direction of the axis of rotation, into a nose end forging mould (4) that is divided into at least two shells (4A, 4B); m) simultaneously with step l), activating said forging machine in order to impart to each of said shells (4A, 4B) of said nose forging mould (4) an opposite reciprocating motion so as to repeatedly beat said heated tube during the advancing of said tube in the mould until it has the shape defined by said nose end mould; n) unloading the finished element. The method according to claim 3) characterised in that steps h) to m) precede steps b) to f). The method according to claim 3) or 4) characterised in that the heating of said tube (2) according to step b) or step h) is performed by induction. The method according to claim 3) or 4) characterised in that the heating of said tube (2) according to step b) or step h) is performed by flame. The method according to claim 6) characterised in that the heating flame is obtained by combustion of natural gas or of LPG or of other combustibles.






IPC
A Täglicher Lebensbedarf
B Arbeitsverfahren; Transportieren
C Chemie; Hüttenwesen
D Textilien; Papier
E Bauwesen; Erdbohren; Bergbau
F Maschinenbau; Beleuchtung; Heizung; Waffen; Sprengen
G Physik
H Elektrotechnik

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