Kobe Steel, Ltd. announces that it has licensed Germany’s Wieland-Werke AG to produce and sell Kobe Steel’s CAC5 copper alloy for terminals and connectors.
The license agreement with Wieland enables Kobe Steel to establish a global supply network for copper alloys, especially for automotive applications. It also addresses the need for manufacturers to procure materials from multiple sources.
Kobe Steel had already licensed CAC5 to Aurubis Buffalo Inc. in the United States in March 2008. The license to Wieland will now enable CAC5 to be supplied worldwide from Asia, the United States and Europe. The arrangement with Wieland is not a first. Kobe Steel had previously provided Wieland with a license to make its SuperKFCTM series of copper alloys for semiconductor leadframes.
Kobe Steel developed CAC5, a high-end product, in 2005 for use in automotive terminals and connections. CAC5 is noted for its outstanding stress relaxation resistance and high strength. Kobe Steel is working to establish CAC5 as a next-generation world standard.
While CAC5’s chemical composition is Cu-Ni-Sn-P, it has about the same strength and bending formability as Cu-Ni-Si system alloys, which have many track records for use in small automotive terminals. CAC5 is a low-cost copper alloy with outstanding stress relaxation resistance, which greatly contributes to reliability in terminals.
As automobiles become lighter and smaller and electrical components increase, terminals are becoming progressively smaller. With excellent stress relaxation resistance, high strength and low cost, Kobe Steel anticipates that CAC5 will be increasingly used.
A major European producer of copper rolled products, Wieland is the top supplier of copper alloys for automotive terminals and connectors in Europe.