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Design and development support

Design and Development Support

Want to cut production costs by 20% or more? Or make your applications easier to manufacture, able to carry more payload, last longer and require less maintenance?

Our design and development experts at SSAB’s Knowledge Service Center stand ready to help. Going beyond traditional support, we collaborate closely with customers to develop products and processes that work for their business.

From idea to innovation

Every year, our materials and design experts meet thousands of customers through technical seminars, courses and development projects. Through these interactions, we better learn how to make your products deliver more value. We then tailor our support to each customer and each solution. So it’s not surprising that more than 75% of our customers decide to work with us on development projects.

Our support and services cover the entire development chain, from design to choice of material, wear calculations, workshop support and production efficiency recommendations.

Ways we support you:

  • Material selection
  • Modeling, forming
  • Simulations 
  • Fatigue and wear calculations
  • Workshop support and recommendations
  • Production efficiency support 

Prototyping and verification

As your design enters the prototyping and production start-up phase, our specialists at the Knowledge Service Center help ensure a smooth production process. They can even provide you with trial material for testing, to help make sure your production start-up is efficient and successful.

Ways we support you:

  • Welding recommendations 
  • Forming recommendations 
  • Tooling advice
  • Workshop verification
  • Trial material

Industrialization and production

When manufacturing products made from high-strength steel, you’ll want a stable and effective production process. Backed by their long experience on the shop floor, our experts can answer your questions about forming and joining, or provide insight into new production techniques, equipment or other related issues.

Ways we support you:

  • Industrialization support and problem solving
  • Forming and joining recommendations
  • Advice on new production techniques

Sales and marketing

Besides supporting your design and development efforts, we provide valuable training and support to help bring your high-strength steel products to market — and help you do better business. Our comprehensive support combined with our co-branding programs enable you to leverage the benefits of our trusted brands and maximize your sales and marketing efforts.

Ways we support you:

  • Product branding programs
  • Training and seminars
  • Technical support

Read some of our customer collaboration success stories to understand our customer-driven approach to development and support in the articles below.


SSAB's top tips for designing with advanced high-strength steel

How to design with advanced high-strength steel for stronger, lighter and safer steel solutions.

Think smart, and think ahead

Because plates made from advanced high-strength steel (AHSS) are less thick but subjected to higher stress levels than conventional steels, the use of this steel places an increased focus on design. The design can literally make — or break — the potential of a long-lasting product.

Modern technology makes it possible to develop new products in a shorter time. Computer-based tools have speeded the process from concept to finished product. Still, all simulations must be verified using the appropriate methods to ensure correct results.

Particularly important points to consider when using AHSS include:

  • Structural design
  • Choice of material
  • Manufacturing methods
  • Welding and other workshop techniques
  • Watch the video to learn more about steel design with AHSS

Get expert advice

For more in-depth assistance, our experts at the SSAB Knowledge Service Center can be consulted. Contact SSAB Tech Support as your first stop in discovering how to use AHSS in new designs.

Our experts will help you answer questions like these:

  • How do I upgrade or redesign an existing application?
  • How do I form, cut or join AHSS?
  • How can I better understand wear impact for wear-critical components and applications?

Steel Handbooks from SSAB help you learn

At SSAB, we're proud of our expertise in using modern steel grades, so we have distilled our knowledge into specially developed Handbooks packed full of facts and ideas to share with you.

We look forward to helping you with your design and engineering challenges!

Collaboration success story: SSAB and Volvo CE improve welded structures

Volvo Construction Equipment knows that it pays to use advanced high-strength steel in welded structures. As part of the Lightweight Optimised Welded Structures (LOST) project, Volvo CE reduced both the weight and production cost of its bogie beam.

SSAB and Volvo CE together developed the new design for the bogie beam as part of the LOST project, in which more than a dozen companies and institutions participated. Through the new design and use of advanced high-strength steel, the weight of the beam was reduced by 22 percent.

Volvo CE has a strong position on the market for articulated haulers, wheel loaders, excavators and other construction equipment. Competition is fierce, so Volvo focuses on targeted research and development that improves quality and performance.

“We have been running various development projects with SSAB since 1980,” says Jack Samuelsson, a researcher at Volvo CE and part-time professor of lightweight structures at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm. “Even then we saw the potential of using higher strength steel, but we also realized that we needed to learn more about how production methods affect the steel.”

Why higher strength steel means better business

The company set as its goal developing lighter but more productive construction machines. The solution was found in new steel grades, and step by step Volvo CE has increased the high-strength steel in its designs.

“We’ve long known that advanced high-strength steel makes it possible to reduce the weight of our products by as much as 20 percent, but it’s not enough to change the materials,” says Samuelsson. “It is important to review the entire manufacturing process so that we can use the new steel in the entire chain, right up to the customers who use our machines.”

With the LOST project, SSAB and Volvo sought to research how high-strength steel can be introduced into welded structures. After intensive testing and analysis, the researchers produced a workable design.

“Because we have so many people, we can conduct detailed studies in several areas within the one overall project,” explains Joachim Larsson at SSAB Knowledge Service Center. “We can then draw general conclusions that can also be used in other contexts.”

According to Larsson, the reduced weight of the new design provides additional benefits for end-users of the machinery. “The reduced weight increases payload and reduces fuel consumption, which lessens the environmental impact,” he says.

Volvo CE is also happy with the results. “With the design and materials, it is very important that the welding is done correctly,” says Samuelsson. “Although the process is more extensive, it pays off for us in the end.”

“Today, we are far ahead,” Samuelsson concludes. “Our success is partly due to the unique development and research collaboration we have.”

(Originally appeared in SSAB World 2011/01)

A stockpile of steel: SSAB's trial material stock center

There’s nothing worse than getting excited about testing a new material in your production, or rushing to get prototypes out in time for tight deadlines, only to find that you have to wait months to receive the trial material. That’s where SSAB’s trial material stock center in Sweden steps into the picture – it can dispatch a wide range of trial steel materials to customers anywhere in the world within a few weeks.

A unique customer offering in the steel industry, our trial material center carries hundreds of items and a few thousand tonnes in stock. Originally catering purely for the automotive industry, the center now serves almost every business segment within SSAB. So whether you’re looking for advanced high-strength steel (AHSS) in an automotive application or sheet steel for construction or heavy equipment components, you can test different types of steels during your production process.

What’s in stock?

Materials stocked include cold-rolled grades (Docol 420 LA – 1500 M), cold-reduced electrogalvanized grades (Docol 1000 DPZE – 1400 MZE), hot-dipped galvanized grades (Dogal 420 LAD – 1000 DPX) and hot-rolled pickled grades (Domex 700 MCE).

The steel sheets at the center range in size from A4 (Letter) to five meters (16.4 ft) and come as slit steel or coils ranging from one tonne to full size. Almost all the test materials are produced from coils, so you get a tailor-made solution in exactly the right shape and form required.

Currently available steel grades

Cold-rolled grades:

  • High-Strength Low Alloy (HSLA): Docol 420 LA – 500 LA, 0.80–3.00 mm
  • Dual Phase (DP): Docol 500 DP – 1180 DP, 0.80–2.00 mm
  • Martensitic (M): Docol 900 M – 1500 M, 0.80–2.00 mm
  • Electrogalvanized Dual Phase (DP) and Martensitic (M) – 7.5 micron zinc layer double sided – Docol 1000 DPZE , Docol 1200–1400 MZE, 0.80–2.00 mm
  • Roll-forming: Docol Roll 800–1000, 0.80–2.00 mm
  • Annealed Boron : Docol 1500B, 1.20–3.00 mm

Hot-rolled pickled & oiled grades:

  • High-Strength Low Alloy (HSLA): Domex 700 MCE, 2.00–3.00 mm
  • Complex Phase (CP): Domex 800 CP, 2.70–4.00 mm
  • Annealed Boron: Domex 1500B, 4.00 mm

How to order

New samples are constantly being added to the stockpile. Our technical specialists can help you decide which steel grade and thickness should be used in a specific application. We can then supply the trial material and, hopefully, the final material when your applications are ready for serial production.

Please contact your local SSAB representative to place your order, or download the SSAB App for the latest grades.