German magazine “Giesserei” talks about “Zanardi Austempering”: a growth opportunity for all foundries

German magazine “Giesserei” talks about “Zanardi Austempering”: a growth opportunity for all foundries

German magazine “Giesserei” talks about our brand “Zanardi Austempering” on November edition. What follows is the English version of the article.

Zanardi Austempering is the new brand of Zanardi Fonderie dedicated to heat treatment for third parties.

In June 2019, during the GIFA trade fair in Düsseldorf, Zanardi Fonderie S.p.A. has launched the “Zanardi Austempering” brand to offer a third-party heat treatment service to all European foundries and present itself as a value-added partner for the conception, design, development, production and certification of Austempered Ductile Iron (ADI).

 “We are making our furnaces available to other foundries, which, like us, view austempered ductile iron as an excellent opportunity for growth, development and innovation”, explains Fabio Zanardi, president and CEO of Zanardi Fonderie S.p.A. “Thanks to the experience we have gained over three decades, both as a foundry and as a provider of contract austempering heat treatment, we are able to work with customers and foundries in developing new ADI applications and provide support during the selection of materials, co-design, process industrialisation, including the definition of chemical analysis.

The installed heat treatment capacity is approximately 10,000 tons a year thanks to three AFC-Holcroft UBQA 36-72-36 furnaces with heat treatment baskets measuring 900x1800x900 mm. The maximum weight allowed for a single component is 1,000 Kg and the series can vary from a single heat treatment basket to motor vehicles.

The furnaces installed guarantee excellent results in terms of process repeatability thanks to a high quench severity ensured by the presence of 54 tons of liquid salts per furnace, constantly agitated, in ratio with about 2.5 tons of gross weight (heat treatment basket + castings). In addition, the closed and insulated configuration and the rapid transition between austempering and hardening (less than 2.5 minutes) guarantee a repeatable quality on heat treated castings leading to a reduction in alloying elements and an increase in efficiency. The austempering phase takes place in a controlled endothermic gas atmosphere to prevent oxidisation of the casting surface.

Austempered ductile iron (ADI) is an important driving force in the development of the cast iron foundry market and offers new business opportunities.

The material is obtained through the isothermal heat treatment, known as “austempering”, on spheroidal graphite iron castings with specific alloys.

ADI, thanks to its mechanical characteristics, offers vehicle manufacturers a valid alternative to steel components and offers cast iron foundries the possibility of offering a wider range of products.

In particular, these innovative materials allow you to:

  • Develop lighter components while reducing the environmental impact
  • Develop components with a better performance to increase the capacity of the vehicle for the same weight
  • Create more complex shapes because you can obtain welded and forged steel, thus reducing production time and costs, the amount of machining and the quantity of material to remove
  • Increase the life cycle of a component thanks to greater wear resistance, thus reducing machine down-time and the number of components that need to be replaced

The Zanardi Austempering brand offers the market a heat treatment service which allows all grades of austempered ductile iron (ADI) to be obtained in compliance with international standards (ISO 17804, EN 1564 and ASTM A897/A897M).
The ISO 17804 international standard includes 6 grades:


Conventional name Designation according to ISO17804:2005 Tensile strength

Rm (N/mm2)

0,2% proof strength

RP0,2 (N/mm2)

Fracture Elongation


A5 (% min)

Brinell Hardness


Fatigue limit

σAG; PS50% (N/mm2)

ADI 800 JS/800-10 800 500 10 250-310 410
ADI 900 JS/900-8 900 600 8 280-340 420
ADI 1050 JS/1050-6 1050 700 6 320-380 440
ADI 1200 JS/1200-3 1200 850 3 340-420 385
ADI 1400 JS/1400-1 1400 1100 1 380-480
ADI 1600 JS/HBW 450 1600 1300 Min. 450


It is also possible to carry out the treatment to obtain non-standardized materials, such as Austempered Grey Iron (AGI) and austempered steel, as well as IDI (Isothermed Ductile Iron), a material patented by Zanardi Fonderie S.p.A.

Over the last thirty years, Zanardi Fonderie S.p.A. has developed major ADI solutions for the leading European players in the field of mechanics from earth-moving equipment, agriculture, industrial vehicles to planetary housing, offering interesting advantages as an alternative to steel or spheroidal graphite iron solutions.

Zanardi Fonderie has always been a pioneer in ADI research and development, working with leading academic institutes, such as WZL/RWTH Aachen University, Technische Universitaet Muenchen, University of Trento, University of Padua, EIT Raw Materials, and participates in international committees on material standardization. The company has been awarded the following certifications: ISO 9001, OHSAS 18001, ISO 14001, EMAS and ISO 50001.

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