When a designer designs a component, the selection of the appropriate material is an essential component, this is especially true for resilient components. The specific requirements are becoming more and more demanding and require a very specific choice of material. There are, of course, a wide variety of requirements, and copper beryllium fulfils some of these very well, namely:
– High electrical and thermal conductivity, high current density.
– Highest strength, much higher than all other copper alloys.
– High fatigue strength, i.e. the original forces are maintained even after many cycles.
– Very good temperature resistance, both at the lowest temperatures (-200 degrees Celsius, with restrictions up to -273 degrees Celsius) and also at temperatures up to 275/315 degrees Celsius, still effective as a spring
– High chemical resistance and resistance to abrasion
– Corrosion resistance
– Paramagnetic properties, i.e. not ferromagnetic
– No sparking
– It can be soft moulded and only hardened afterwards, thus a wide variety of shapes is possible
A copper beryllium spring can be produced either as a compression spring, tension spring, torsion spring or wire bending part made of wire, or as a stamped bending part, leaf spring or disc spring made of strip (flat material). We process copper beryllium both on our automatic spring coiling machines and automatic wire bending machines as wire and on our Bihler automatic punching and bending machines and automatic punching machines as strip. We produce small series for special applications as well as large series from copper beryllium. Copper beryllium is also available on the market in small quantities in the various forms, so small series can also be produced well at a manageable cost.
As we manufacture the tools ourselves and also carry out the heat treatment (precipitation hardening), we can achieve and promise the properties to suit the customer’s application to the customer’s advantage. Due to the combination of the various excellent properties of copper beryllium, the following areas of application stand out in particular:
– Contact element in electrical switchgear, especially in applications where sparking is undesirable.
– Switching element, especially for high currents
– Switch-disconnectors for high currents and voltages, high-voltage disconnectors
– measuring instruments
– Electronic applications
– X-ray apparatus
– Explosion-proof applications in the chemical industry, oil and gas production and off-shore applications
– X-ray applications
As an example, one can take the circuit breakers for railway applications. High voltages and large currents, both DC and AC, must be switched safely and quickly. Copper beryllium offers the advantages mentioned, of which the prevention of sparking, abrasion resistance of the contact and corrosion resistance are probably the most important.
Copper beryllium is not subject to any restrictions under the EU’s latest legislative hazardous substances regulations on waste electrical/electronic equipment (ROHS) and REACH. Similarly, according to the draft agreement of the electrical/electronic industry, there are no existing or expected limitations, nor are there any prohibitions on the use of copper beryllium alloys.
This shows that copper beryllium is an excellent material for a wide range of applications. We will be happy to advise you on the design and optimisation of your copper beryllium spring element.