The big question - is the computer simulation of induction hardening accurate?

Recently, one of our sales leads asked us to validate an induction hardening case by comparing the results of simulation versus real life, so their procurement team can make fact-based decisions. We decided to write an article based on this case to demonstrate the correlation between induction simulation and actual results.



The process - induction hardening of a shaft



The actual workpiece in the manufacturing line (a small splined shaft from gearbox) is rotated 400 revolutions per minute, it's heated up very quickly via induction and hardened in varying depth.


We simulated the same heating process on CENOS simulation software. Our results revealed a higher temperature than projected - around 1200 ℃ which is completely acceptable. With rotation cases, the most important role is played by parameters like simulation time step and material properties.


Parameters:

  • Frequency - 260 kHz

  • Heating time 0.5 s

  • Rotation speed 400 rpm

  • Current 4242 A

  • Workpiece material AISI 1045 (medium carbon steel)


Actual workpiece
Actual workpiece - the shaft cross section


CENOS simulation result
CENOS simulation result

Actual workpiece - the shaft cross section
Actual workpiece - the shaft cross section

CENOS simulation result
CENOS simulation result

Hardening depth


Our client wanted to compare the hardening depth of two cases - one from simulation and one from the factory. Images show t