Category Archives: Uncategorized

FASTLITE: French Program to Cut Vehicle Weight

In the next 5 to 7 years, the French FASTLITE project is attempting to take 200 kg (440 lb) out of vehicle weight. FASTLITE is subsidized by the French government, and involves Renault, PSA Peugeot Citroen, a dozen suppliers, research … Continue reading

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Audi A3: Mixed Materials Leads to Lighter Weight

The current model Audi A3 is 80 kg lighter than the prior version, resulting from “relatively thin-walled, form-hardened steels that make up 26% of an A3’s body materials, many aluminum parts including the hood and fenders, plastic for the front … Continue reading

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Aluminum from Bauxite and Alumina

Here’s a video showing how aluminum is made:

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Aluminum Can Manufacturing

Here’s a great video on how aluminum cans are made:

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IIHS Small Overlap Frontal Crash Test

New challenges are ahead in material requirements and automotive structural design. http://www.iihs.org/news/rss/pr081412.html

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Training, Mathematics, and Communicating

I read a summary of a research report out of Carnegie-Mellon University this morning which found that early understanding of fractions and division predicts a student’s future math success (http://www.cmu.edu/homepage/society/2012/summer/math-success.shtml). Similarly, I read an interesting and somewhat humorous article in … Continue reading

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North American Deep Draw Research Group (NADDRG)

On May 15, the Spring 2012 Symposium of the North American Deep Drawing Research Group (NADDRG) was held at Oakland University, Auburn Hills, MI, with over 100 attendees from industry and academia coming to discuss the latest theoretical and practical … Continue reading

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Bridge the Gap Between Virtual Modelling and your Plant Floor

Manufacturers and designers have much interest in virtual design and modelling for formed sheet metal products. There can be significant advantages, including reduced time to manufacture, lower cost, environmental friendliness, and greater flexibility in experimentation. The problem many encounter, though, … Continue reading

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The Ultimate Material in Automotive Manufacturing

Cheap, strong, manufacturable, light-weight. That’s all the auto industry wants. Of course, there is no single material that meets all of these qualifications, at least not under today’s economics and technologies. The likely candidates – steel, aluminum, magnesium, and composites … Continue reading

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AHSS Applications in Automotive

The American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) just released a 42 page report titled AHSS 101: Evolving Use of Advanced High-strength Steels for Automotive Applications. It’s a great overview of the different grades of AHSS and their applications. For a … Continue reading

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Hardness Testing: Rockwell / Brinell / Vickers Scales and Applicability to Stamped Sheet Steel Parts

You’ve probably noticed that hardness is sometimes reported on your sheet metal certs (and if you see it, you are likely paying for it, probably a few dollars a ton). If you are using mild steel that’s about 1.5 mm … Continue reading

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