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Apparatus and methods for single sheet forming using induction heating

Image Number 12 for United States Patent #6914225.

Apparatus and methods for single sheet forming using induction heating include a pair of dies defining a die cavity for containing a workpiece, which is inductively heated by an oscillating magnetic field within the die cavity. A susceptor is positioned between the workpiece and one die surface defined by one of the dies. The susceptor is capable of coupling with the oscillating magnetic field to induce a current within the susceptor to heat the susceptor. The susceptor transfers heat to the workpiece. An inlet for pressurized forming fluid injects the fluid between the susceptor and the workpiece to form the workpiece into direct contact with a forming surface defined by one of the dies. The susceptor may be electrically connected to the workpiece to inhibit electrical arcing from the susceptor to adjacent electrically conductive components when current is induced in the susceptor. The apparatus may further include a seal frame that releasably engages the workpiece to form a pressurizing cavity between the susceptor and the workpiece. The inlet injects the fluid into the pressurizing cavity to develop and apply forming pressure to the workpiece.

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