AK Steel accepted an award from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) High Performance Computing for Materials (HPC4Mtls) Program. Researchers from AK Steel plan to work in collaboration with DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory to develop microstructure-based transformation models to predict austenite stability in high-strength steels in a project titled “Thermo-Mechanical Forming Process Development to Produce Tailored Strength Automotive Structural Components.” The collaboration will develop mathematical models that could enable the production of automotive components with properties tailored to meet the demanding performance requirements of the future, according to AK Steel.

The project will be funded by DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s (EERE) Vehicle Technologies Office.

This is the fourth award the West Chester, Ohio-based company has received from EERE to support innovative steel research. The first, awarded in 2017, focused on manufacturing new steels that provide increased efficiency in high-frequency electric motors. A second award in 2018 focused on low-density steels that could ultimately be used in automotive structural applications. The third, which was awarded earlier this year, focused on leveraging high-performance computing from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory for hot-rolling steel research.