News

October 2021

ExOne and Fraunhofer IFAM deepen partnership on metal binder development

The ExOne Company and the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Technology and Advanced Materials (Fraunhofer IFAM) have announced that they are deepening their partnership on binder and materials development projects following the success of CleanFuse metal binder.

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Magnesium storm throws up another roadblock for automakers

Widespread closures of magnesium smelters in top producer China due to a clampdown on emissions and shortages of energy have propelled prices of the metal to their highest since 2008, posing another headache for automakers. Magnesium, also widely used in the aerospace industry, is needed to make aluminium alloys for the auto sector, which is already reeling from chip shortages.

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3D printing and titanium: A life-changing combination

Additive manufacturing and titanium powder will disrupt medical implant production. 3D printing’s customisation strengths enable the creation of almost any shape using additive manufacturing (AM) technology – even replicating our own skulls. Sandvik’s AM and metal powder specialists are exploring AM’s medical applications potential and preparing for the future of surgical implants.

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Smart ring: Installation of sensors during laser-based powder bed fusion holds great potential

A full handbag or bulging trouser pockets – who doesn’t know what it’s like when keys, wallet, and more have to be lugged around. Fraunhofer IGCV has a simple and stylish solution: A smart finger ring with an integrated microchip. This technology, in which the electronics are integrated directly within the 3D printing process, can be used in various ways and offers great potential.

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Elon Musk life-size bronze statue in Manhattan mocked online

Social media is a place where beautiful things happen, such as sharing information with family and friends, keeping in touch with loved ones, and posting photos of our daily lives. However, it can also be a scary place because of online bashing and mocking. Tesla CEO Elon Musk is no beginner when it comes to online parody, but he usually posts funny memes and quirky remarks on his infamous Twitter account.

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3D printing turns 40 – but which process is best suited to your requirements?

In 1981, Japanese inventor Hideo Kodama created a first-of-its-kind rapid-prototyping device that used UV lights to harden polymers and create three-dimensional forms reports Jennifer Johnson. Kodama’s technology was never properly commercialised, although the US inventor Chuck Hull used similar principles in a process he called “stereolithography”.

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Researchers explore laser beam shaping to improve metal 3D printing

While laser-based 3D printing techniques have revolutionised the production of metal parts by greatly expanding design complexity, the laser beams traditionally used in metal printing have drawbacks that can lead to defects and poor mechanical performance.

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GE Renewable Energy, Fraunhofer IGCV and voxeljet AG plan to develop world’s largest sand binder jetting 3D printer for offshore wind turbines

Project to accelerate and optimise the production of a key casting components of the GE Haliade-X offshore turbine. Highly complex components are installed in the nacelles of offshore wind turbines. A suitable production method is the additive manufacturing of sand moulds for metal casting.

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New alloying process benefits aluminium casting – and more

The manufacturing value of tungsten alloys is found in their corrosion resistance against molten metal and high thermal conductivity for chill mould casting processing of aluminium. Yet, because it is a heavy metal, with a density comparable to gold, tungsten is highly valued for tool manufacturing and for shielding from alpha and gamma radiation.

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August 2021

Newly patented manufacturing process of a tungsten alloy enables additive manufacturing of complex components

Tungsten alloys (WNiFe / WNiCu) are used because of their corrosion resistance against molten metal and high thermal conductivity for chill-mould casting processing of aluminium. Yet, also in tool manufacture and for shielding from alpha and gamma radiation, the heavy metal with its density comparable to gold is indispensable. However, at around 3 400°C, tungsten has the highest melting point of all chemical elements and is therefore very difficult to work with.

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ASK Chemicals launches ASK Online Academy

ASK Chemicals, a foundry chemicals and materials supplier, has launched its ASK Online Academy programme on 30 June 30 2021. With ASK Online Academy, ASK Chemicals offers the foundry industry an additional channel to gain in-depth expert knowledge and the latest insights into its solutions in foundry chemistry, feeding technology and metallurgy. ASK Online Academy can be seen as a virtual spin-off of ASK Casting Academy, an in-person event.

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Lowering the pressure on die-casting development

Diecasting has earned considerable attention from industrial designers in recent years, regarding finished products and consequently production systems. This is mainly the outgrowth of those designers’ efforts to develop lighter versions of standard products, in automotive manufacturing most obviously. Those efforts led to the development of structural castings and drivetrain parts designed in aluminium alloys, for volume production.

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Toyota Industries Corporation and Siemens cooperate on digital transformation for die-casting

AI predicts abnormalities in aluminium die-casting products. To support their goal of manufacturing quality parts, Toyota Industries Corporation and Siemens have cooperated to develop artificial intelligence (AI) that can predict product abnormalities in aluminium die-casting, a key process in automotive air conditioning compressor production. The development is one of the world’s first to use defect prediction AI for die-casting.

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LK Group introduces the world’s first 9 000T giant die-casting machine

Two years after the world’s first 6 000T die-casting machine was launched by the LK Group the company has achieved another remarkable milestone this year by building the world’s first 9 000T machine. The new model is named Dreampress and the clamping force is 9 000 tons, which is the largest die-casting machine in the world. In December 2019, LK Group launched the world’s largest 6 000T ultra-large intelligent die-casting unit to the market.

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Tesla’s superior engineering cuts costs, giving company new option to stoke demand

The company also continues to produce at capacity, amid persisting global challenges and record demand for electric cars. Tesla reported $1.14 billion in (GAAP) net income for Q2 – the first time it has surpassed $1 billion. This is among a revenue of $11.96 billion, mostly made by selling cars. Overall automotive revenues amounted to $10.21 billion, of which only $354 million came from sales of regulatory credits – less than in any other year.

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Fast and cost-effective: Process-safe additive manufacturing of titanium components in the aerospace industry

With the project “EasyTitan”, the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Technology and Advanced Materials IFAM in Dresden has launched a project for the rapid and process-reliable manufacturing of light-metal components in aerospace. Together with the space management of the German Aerospace Center e.V. (DLR), filament-based metal printing processes are to be optimised under reduced gravity conditions.

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Lubricants for large-scale die-casting

“The expanding scope of automotive emissions regulations is pressuring automakers and their suppliers, one result of which is designers and manufacturers’ focus on ‘light-weighting’ new vehicles. Their goal is to reduce overall vehicle weight to improve fuel economy and range by introducing a growing number of hybrid and electric vehicles,” says Mark Cross, the global business development director for die-casting at Quaker Houghton.

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Two German firms have developed a process that allows a casting or other component to be secured ready for machining, while at the same time checking it for accuracy of form and position before machining starts

Two German firms, 5-axis vertical machining center manufacturer Wenzler (Heller group) and workholding equipment specialist Roemheld, have developed a process that allows a casting or other component to be secured ready for machining, while at the same time checking it for accuracy of form and position before machining starts.

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AGC Ceramics and voxeljet develop 3D printing ceramics for investment casting shells and cores

In a joint tailoring project, Japanese ceramics expert AGC Ceramics Co. and voxeljet AG have qualified the high-performance ceramic material Brightorb for 3D printing. In addition to potential applications in the production of structural components and works of art, the material is particularly suitable for 3D printing of highly complex moulds and cores for metal casting. Brightorb was developed on a VX1000 with a build volume of 1 000mm x 600mm x 500mm.

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June 2021

Big Ben bell foundry plan approved by government

Plans to redevelop the foundry where Big Ben was cast have been given the green light by the government. Decision has drawn wave of criticism from culture and heritage professionals, accusing government of ‘money-grabbing philistinism’. The plans for a boutique hotel had already been approved by Tower Hamlets Council, but the communities secretary decided to call them in, taking the decision out of the council’s hands.

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Castings Technology International casts large titanium pump casting

Castings Technology International (Cti) said it recently produced the largest single component ever cast by the company in commercially pure titanium and probably the largest titanium part poured into a ceramic mould. With an envelope of 1 000mm square by 600mm high and requiring over 1.2 tons of metal to be melted, the casting showcases several novel casting techniques developed in-house at Cti.

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Sheffield Forgemasters adopts pioneering Cobot

Sheffield Forgemasters has adopted pioneering collaborative robotic (Cobot) assistance for Foundry operatives. The firm is are one of the first foundries in the world to employ the 6A10 Grinding Cobot, from French firm RB3D, which works with operators of heavy grinders to stabilise and take the weight of the grinder, amplify its operational pressure and dramatically reduce the level of vibrations for the operator.

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ExOne acquires 3DP Tooling Technology

The binder-jet printing specialist acquired Freshmade 3D, developers of a method for creating moulds and tooling from 3D printed sand forms infiltrated and coated using a patented technology. ExOne, a developer and supplier of binder-jet additive manufacturing technology, acquired the assets of Freshmade 3D, an Ohio, USA business with a patented method for creating tooling from sand forms 3D printed on ExOne machines.

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Enable Manufacturing unveils new vacuum additive casting process for cheaper metal parts

UK-based metal 3D printing service Enable Manufacturing has announced the launch of its new Vacuum Additive Casting process which it claims can manufacture metal parts at a fraction of the cost of direct 3D metal printing. Like the other additive casting processes offered by Enable Manufacturing, the process is based on a hybrid approach to 3D printing moulds and patterns for casting parts, but also uses a vacuum casting technique to draw the metal into fine structures.

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Iron ore rebounds as China mills churn out steel at record pace

Iron ore futures climbed back above $200 a ton as soaring steel production in China showed there’s no sign of the industry cooling despite government attempts to rein in output from last year’s record of over one billion tons, as reported by Reuters. Crude steel output in April rose to 97.9 million tons to hit monthly and daily run rate records. The robust pace of production also lifted the year-to-date tally to 375 million tons, a 16% jump compared to same period last year.

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China puts Australia on notice with push to diversify iron ore

Beijing threw the spotlight on trade tensions with its top commodities supplier, Australia, after the government’s economic planning agency said it’s looking to diversify China’s supply of iron ore. Chinese firms should boost domestic exploration for the steel-making input, widen their sources of imports, and explore overseas ore resources, the National Development and Reform Commission said at its monthly briefing.

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Surge in prices of raw materials casts shadow

The prices of raw materials used to make almost everything are skyrocketing, and the upward trajectory looks set to continue as the world economy roars back to life. From steel and copper to corn and lumber, commodities started 2021 with a bang, surging to levels not seen for years. The rally threatens to raise the cost of goods from the lunchtime sandwich to gleaming skyscrapers. It’s also lit the fuse on the massive reflation trade that’s gripped markets this year and pushed up inflation expectations.

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April 2021

O.M.LER srl offers innovative decoring solutions

During the last few years O.M.LER’s management, technical and sales staff, felt it was essential to offer something new to their clients. So, then, during the past year of COVID-19 lockdown, O.M.LER personnel have worked hard and diligently to launch into new markets, and with this develop new and innovative decoring solutions.

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Zimbabwe says Tsingshan of China plans iron ore mine, steel plant to begin from May

A fluorite and limestone production plant will also soon be set up, Information Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said. Tsingshan Holdings Group Co., the world’s top producer of nickel and stainless steel, will start construction on an iron ore mine and a carbon steel plant in Zimbabwe in May, according to a senior government official.

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Ford and ExOne seek to patent high-speed 3DP for aluminium

The automaker and additive manufacturing specialist have co-developed a binder-jet and sintering process for aluminium 6061, pointing the way to high-speed production of light-weight, complex parts with densities greater than 99%. Ford Motor Co. and The ExOne Co. are seeking to patent a 3D printing process for automotive aluminium alloy 6061 they co-developed, involving a binder-jet process and sintering which they claim, “delivers properties comparable to die-casting.”

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International Aluminium Institute releases global aluminium industry 2050 climate pathways

Aluminium industry aims to reduce emissions by 80% by 2050. The International Aluminium Institute (IAI) has today published the most comprehensive greenhouse gas emissions reductions pathways available to the aluminium sector over the next three decades. The pathways are based on the IAI’s unrivalled data and leading analysis of the global aluminium industry.

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IDRA secures first order for an 8 000 ton die-casting cell

The machine with the unbelievable clamping force of 8 000 ton is to be delivered for the manufacture of large structural parts. The die-cast parts will be chassis parts for larger vehicles such as pick-ups, small trucks and SUVs. Tesla has placed an order for the world’s first 8 000 ton casting machine, which is expected to be key to produce the Cybertruck pick-up truck.

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Voxeljet shipped 131 000 3D printed parts in 2020, that’s 750 tons!

Sand (and plastic) binder jetting 3D printer vendor voxeljet also operates as a major service provider. In 2020, its service activities have delivered an impressive 131 000 3D printed parts, which if stacked would measure 604 metres in height (based on the average build platform of all 3D printers operated in the company’s European Service Centre). That’s not all. The total machine runtime to produce these parts was 32 000 hours, which is 1 333 days or 3.7 years of printing.

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Wohlers Report 2021 finds 7.5% growth in additive manufacturing industry despite pandemic

Wohlers Associates, Inc. has announced the publication of Wohlers Report 2021. This marks the 26th year of publishing the industry-leading annual report on additive manufacturing (AM) and 3D printing. The study provides trends, perspectives, and forecasts as a tool for decision making, education, and knowledge acceleration. The report gives readers new to AM a comprehensive understanding of the technology and industry.

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Viking Analytics and pour-tech AB sign contract to provide AI operators to iron foundries

Viking Analytics, a Swedish startup in advanced analytics solutions for predictive operations, and pour-tech AB, a specialist in automatic pouring systems, announced a partnership to offer AI operators to iron foundries. Viking Analytics notes that its solution, named EASYpour, uses data analytics and machine learning algorithms developed to automatically adjust the pouring process. This improves product quality, enables faster production, and reduces costs.

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Heinz Nelissen announces his retirement

On 30 June 2021, Heinz Nelissen will retire after 31 years of successful service to the Foseco and Vesuvius group of companies. Heinz Nelissen was instrumental in the development and expansion of Foseco and Vesuvius, first as product manager for non-ferrous products, then for Foseco as sales manager of the foundry non-ferrous business unit. ““In my 31 years in the foundry industry, I have met many great people, faced many challenges and implemented many ideas together with colleagues and customers.”

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Larger die-casting machines revolutionise body-in-white production

Bühler is expanding its portfolio with the launch of Carat 560 and Carat 610, and the recently announced Carat 840 to meet the trends for larger and more complex parts. “Structural components have clearly gained in importance in the automotive industry over the last years, with a trend towards even larger parts. This presents a clear opportunity for the die-casting industry,” says Cornel Mendler, Managing Director Die Casting.

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Foundry-Skills launches free video wiki for prospective foundrymen

Trainees, students, onboarding newcomers and career changers, casting buyers, design engineers and lecturers in foundry technology will find a modern access to expert knowledge in addition to literature. Foundry-Skills is a new, free video wiki with thousands of foundry-specific short videos spread across more than 45 categories. From sand casting to investment casting, from hand moulding to quality assurance, from aluminium to zinc.

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Elkem’s long term goal is to achieve carbon-neutral metal production

Currently, Elkem is conducting a feasibility study for the establishment of carbon capture at the Norwegian smelters. Elkem, one of the world’s leading suppliers of silicon-based advanced materials, has a broad and comprehensive approach to the work of reducing emissions and contributing to a sustainable future. Recently, the company was rated among the world’s leading on climate transparency and action by CDP.

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Malaysia sets ferrous scrap tariff at 15 per cent

Nation’s steelmakers had been urging an export ban or restriction. The Malaysian government reportedly has finalised its system to impose a 15 per cent duty on ferrous scrap exports, enacting a policy favoured by that nation’s steel industry. A March 19 online news report by S&P Global Platts says a Malaysian government gazette entry on that day points to the March 25 enactment of the 15 per cent duty on outbound shipments for scrap with the Harmonised System.

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Plansee Group becomes majority shareholder in Ceratizit Group

Austria’s Plansee Group has reported that as of March 1, 2021, it holds the majority interest in the carbide tool production company Ceratizit SA, headquartered in Mamer, Luxembourg. Formed in 2002 as the result of a merger between Plansee Tizit and Cerametal, Plansee Group’s share in Ceratizit initially accounted for 50%. The parties have agreed to keep the extent of the acquired interest and any financial details confidential.

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Audi and EOS expand range of metal 3D printing applications

Audi and EOS development partnership has reached a new milestone: Audi has moved entirely to additive manufacturing for selected tool segments for hot forming at its Metal 3D Printing Centre – conventional production methods are no longer used in these cases. The premium manufacturer leverages the EOS M 400 system for 3D printing.

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Rio Tinto and Amaero collaborate on aluminium-scandium alloy for AM

Under the agreement, Rio Tinto will deliver alloy billets made of responsibly-produced, low-carbon aluminium from its hydro-powered Canadian smelters and high-purity scandium oxide from its Rio Tinto Fer et Titane (RTFT) metallurgical complex in Sorel-Tracy, Quebec, Canada. The billets will be processed by Amaero into powder for additive manufacturing (AM) and offered to the market for high temperature applications.

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VW accelerates move away from internal combustion engines

Germany’s Volkswagen has announced that it is accelerating its move away from the internal combustion engine, expecting fully-electric vehicles to make up more than 70% of its European sales by 2030, a marked difference to the previously-anticipated target of 35%. By the same year, VW is hoping for electric to make up over half of its sales in the United States and China.

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Novelis debuts new aluminium solution category for automaker

Novelis Inc. has unveiled its strongest automotive aluminium product to date, Novelis AdvanzTM 7UHS-s701. The technologically advanced, ultra-high-strength material is now available commercially to the global automotive industry. The product offers lightweighting potential of up to 40% over existing ultra-high strength, hot-formed steel solutions. It is designed for safety-critical structural applications in passenger vehicles that require high in-service strengths.

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Volvo to be fully electric by 2030 and carbon neutral by 2040

The Volvo Group, headquartered in Gothenburg, Sweden, reports that it is accelerating its electrification movement and plans to be fully electric by 2030. The car manufacturer reports that it was the first established car maker to commit to all-out electrification back in 2017 and that demand would decide when exactly the group would leave the internal combustion engine behind altogether. Volvo now sees demand for its electrified cars increasing rapidly.

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February 2021

Assmang declares force majeure on ferro-manganese production in South Africa

Mining and metals producer Assmang has declared force majeure on its medium-carbon ferro-manganese production in South Africa, a source told Fastmarkets recently. Assmang produces refined ferro-manganese at its Cato Ridge Alloys plant in the eastern province of KwaZulu-Natal and halted production last week. The force majeure declaration was made in the first week of 2021.

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Ford Mustang won’t be discontinued even though SUVs, trucks sell much better

A few years ago, the Ford Motor Company in the USA made a rather controversial decision. The Blue Oval decided to pull the plug on passenger cars in favour of sport utility vehicles and trucks. Thanks to hindsight, now we can all agree that Ford did the right thing by discontinuing the Fiesta, Focus, Taurus, and the Fusion, although the latter will come back as a fancy wagon inspired by the Subaru Outback.

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From foundry to stovetop: Le Creuset cast iron pots

The coveted heavy-duty, Skittles-coloured enamelled pots, pans, and kettles evoke ambitious Sunday feasts and an iconic French timelessness. Produced in a tiny working-class town far from the lights of Paris since 1925, Le Creuset products have gone global, making their way to kitchens around the world, from Japan to the United States.

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Why is cast iron the best material for casserole dishes – and what about stainless steel, copper and aluminium?

Stainless steel is a non-reactive material which can go into the dishwasher, and which is lighter than traditional cast iron. “The problem with stainless steel is that it has terrible heat conductivity. It heats up slowly and unevenly compared to other materials,” says Justin Kowbel, co-founder of Borough Kitchen. “If the flame hits a certain point, you get hot patches.”

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New economic forecast from AFS projects strong growth in 2021

The US metalcasting industry is projected to grow at a rate of 19.7% in 2021, according to a new report published by the American Foundry Society (AFS). This and other vital business intelligence was released in the biannual AFS Metalcasting Forecast & Trends, which provides a targeted economic outlook to foundries, industry suppliers, and others who must understand analysts’ projections for the short- and long-term future of the metalcasting industry.

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Rio Tinto’s new aluminium alloys to support recycling by die-casters

Rio Tinto is introducing a new family of unique aluminium alloys designed to allow diecasters to increase their use of recycled content in the production of automotive parts, delivering improvements on both environmental footprint and production costs. The company’s new high-quality alloy series has been developed for high pressure vacuum diecasters to mix with their own scrap and recycled cleaned crushed wheels.

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Tesla trying to make real cars with unibody casting like toy cars are made

Tesla has not given up on its dream of manufacturing cars by creating the entire body of the vehicle with a single-piece casting. Elon Musk recently tweeted: “With our giant casting machines, we are literally trying to make full-size cars in the same way that toy cars are made.” Just like toy cars are manufactured using a complete body diecast, Tesla is trying to bring the same concept to real-world car manufacturing.

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Management buyout of Castings Technology International

The management team of Castings Technology International (CTI) and the University of Sheffield have agreed a management buyout of the company. Taking effect from 19 January 2021, ownership of CTI has transferred to the company’s existing management team, which will take sole ownership of the company and operate it as a privately-run business.

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Trimet Aluminium SE develops a new aluminium alloy for crash-relevant components

Trimet Aluminium SE has developed a new aluminium alloy for crash-relevant components. The wrought alloy trimal-53 is suitable for structural components with high strength and excellent deformation capacity. The aluminium specialist thus now supplies a material for which there is a growing need, particularly in the vehicle manufacturing sector. The new Trimet alloy meets every major carmaker’s need for light-metal materials to produce safety-related vehicle components.

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Porsche unveils new electric drive housing from 3D printing and additive manufacturing

Porsche has unveiled its first-ever electric drive housing created entirely using 3D printing and additive manufacturing technology. According to the German carmaker, 3D printing and its latest additive laser fusion process are opening new possibilities in creating high-stress components for low-volume series production.

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GM investing $71 Million in two Ohio manufacturing plants

Company allocates $39 million to Toledo transmission plant and $32 million to Defiance casting plant, further strengthening its manufacturing presence in Ohio. Late last year General Motors announced plans to invest $71 million into two Ohio manufacturing facilities, including $39 million at its Toledo transmission plant and $32 million at its Defiance casting plant.

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Attendee registration opens for Virtual Metalcasting Congress 2021

Professionals across the entire metalcasting supply chain can now register for the virtual conference and trade show, Metalcasting Congress 2021. Streaming live online and on demand 12 to 21 April 2021, the first-ever virtual Metalcasting Congress will offer attendees the same quality presentations and business intelligence they’ve come to expect from North America’s premier foundry industry event.

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Ferrous scrap metal traders benefit from high prices

Sustained demand and substantially higher prices for scrap export during the final weeks of 2020 meant a bright New Year for traders. The cost of shipments of HMS 80/20 heavy steel scrap from northern Europe to Turkey soared from around US$293 per ton in November 2020 to US$399 in December and then hit US$432 early in early January 2021 before easing off later in the month.

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Scrapping planes in a pandemic isn’t easy

A ‘double whammy’ of low demand and high prices is hitting the aerospace metals sector, according to experts at a recent webinar on the aviation sector. But, the Argus Media event heard, there are signs of a rebound in demand from China – especially ‘good demand’ for stainless steel, as reported by Recycling International. The global market for recycled aircraft parts is expected to be worth around US$6 billion (EUR4.9 billion) by 2022.

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December 2020

Fraunhofer Lighthouse Project futureAM gets metallic 3D printing in shape for industrial use

Accelerating the additive production of metal components by at least a factor of 10: With this goal in mind, the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft launched the lighthouse project “futureAM – Next Generation Additive Manufacturing” in 2017. As the project ends in November 2020, six Fraunhofer institutes have made technological leaps forward in systems engineering, materials and process control as well as end-to-end digitalisation.

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NASA’s Perseverance Rover bringing 3D printed metal parts to Mars

If you want to see science fiction at work, visit a modern machine shop, where 3D printers create materials in just about any shape you can imagine. NASA is exploring the technique, known as additive manufacturing when used by specialised engineers, to build rocket engines as well as potential outposts on the Moon and Mars. Nearer in the future is a different milestone. NASA’s Perseverance Rover, which lands on the Red Planet on 18 February 2021, carries 11 metal parts made with 3D printing.

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ExOne to optimise sand 3D printers for use with ITOCHU Ceratech Corporation’s cerabeads

ExOne, a global leader in industrial sand and metal 3D printers using binder jetting technology, has announced an agreement to optimise its sand 3D printers for use with premium Naigai Cerabeads from ITOCHU Ceratech Corporation, a leading Japanese ceramic product manufacturer. Cerabeads are a premium ceramic foundry sand used to create moulds and cores for metal casting high-value products in the automotive, oil and gas, mining and construction industries.

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Making a marque: The secrets behind those luxury hood ornaments

This year, the all-new 2020 Bentley Flying Spur came adorned with a large upright “Flying B” mascot on the hood. It’s a notable offering: This will be the first time that this style of B, which will electronically rise to view from underneath a modern Bentley badge, will be featured on a modern-day edition of a four-door Grand Tourer. The last time the B appeared, the year was 1930 and the car was a Bentley Model 8-Litre.

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Oscars 2020: The statuette’s Croatian connection

The 92nd Academy Awards, which honoured the best films of 2019, took place at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California on Sunday 9 February 2020. This year’s winners took home the famous Oscar statuette, which for the fifth year in a row will have a Croatian connection. Polich Tallix Fine Art Foundry in New York, which is owned by the son of Croatian immigrants, has once again manufactured the famous Oscar statuette for the Academy Awards.

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General Kinematics celebrates 60-year mark

General Kinematics (GK) celebrated its 60th anniversary in September by thanking its employees for their talent and support and by acknowledging the support of its customers and community. Albert Musschoot founded General Kinematics in a small storefront in Barrington, Illinois, USA in 1960 with a box of letterheads, an electric typewriter and a grapefruit crate to use as a desk. As demand for GK vibratory equipment grew, by 1975 GK built a fabrication facility in Crystal Lake, Illinois, which is the company’s headquarters today.

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Chinese government reiterates paper, ferrous scrap barrier

Proclamation reinstates intention to prohibit ferrous scrap and recovered fibre imports. A November 25 announcement posted to the Chinese Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) website updates and reaffirms that nation’s intention to prohibit the import of recovered fibre, plastic scrap, ferrous scrap and other recyclable materials starting January 1, 2021. Recyclers and traders of every other material face being cut off from their former Chinese customers.

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Enable Manufacturing has been granted funding from Innovate UK for a project to prove the concept of its Additive Casting process

Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation, is investing up to £191 million to fund single and collaborative research and development projects as part of the Sustainable Innovation Fund over the next two years. The aim of these competitions is to help all sectors of the UK rebuild after the effects of COVID-19.

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Sri Lanka restricts scrap metal exports

The government of Sri Lanka reportedly has banned the export of ferrous scrap and several types of nonferrous scrap, including copper, brass, aluminum and stainless steel. The online report on the Colombo, Sri Lanka-based EconomyNext website says such exports could still occur following a recommendation of the Industrial Development Board and other related agencies, according to the Sri Lankan government information office.

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Wendt, Didion form strategic partnership

The two companies will combine Wendt’s scrap processing solutions with Didion’s rotary drum technology. Wendt Corp., Buffalo, New York, has announced that it is entering into an exclusive partnership with Missouri-based Didion International Inc. The two companies report that they plan to combine Wendt’s scrap processing solutions with Didion’s rotary drum technology. According to a news release from Wendt, the partnership will leverage experience from both companies in their respective specialties in order to expand and improve Wendt’s product portfolio.

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ArcelorMittal to idle blast furnace in Poland

The reported move comes on the heels of the steelmaker selling its blast furnaces in the US. Luxembourg-based steelmaker ArcelorMittal reportedly is preparing to permanently idle its blast furnace production in Krakow, Poland. The move comes on the heels of its sale of blast furnace and basic oxygen furnace (BOF) assets in the United States in late September and could be tied to a net-zero carbon emissions pledge made by the steelmaker recently.

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Despite all the difficulties and challenges of COVID-19 O.M.LER s.r.l. is optimistic

The end of each year is traditionally the time to evaluate a company or individual’s performance – whether the goals and budgets set were met, to celebrate the achievements in the year and to analyse why and devise a solution, if the year was not as successful as was expected. Despite all the difficulties and challenges that are associated with COVID-19, O.M.LER and Globen Engineering remain optimistic about the future in Europe, as well as in South Africa.

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What may be world’s first furnace from 6 500 years ago found in Israel

Over 10 000 years ago, peoples around the Mediterranean basin were hammering unheated rock rich in pretty green copper ore and making objects with it: beads, pendants and other small ornaments. After thousands of years of hammering, people began heating tiny amounts of copper ore in small clay pots called crucibles, producing metal. Now, Israeli archaeologists report on evidence of the next stage: a furnace smelting, dating to about 6 500 years ago in Be’er Sheva.

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October 2020

Move aside robots, Tesla bets on aluminium casting

Robots are not efficient enough for Tesla’s new car factory in Germany, which plans to replace hundreds of them with giant aluminium casting machines to build simpler chassis parts, a person familiar with the matter told Reuters. The electric carmaker has struggled to raise production volumes through hi-tech automation and was forced to fly in a new production line from Germany to Nevada in 2018 after robots failed to coordinate seamlessly at the US factory.

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How a manufacturer brought 3D printing into the foundry

When you think of 3D printing, you probably don’t think of metal casting. But in fact, 3D printing has been a huge help to foundries thanks in large part to one Ohio-based company, Humtown Products. In 2014, the family-owned business decided to try using 3D printers to create castings for engine blocks in cars, trucks, construction equipment and aerospace technology.

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Fraunhofer IWS project enables green laser to melt pure copper

Previously, it was not possible to melt copper for complex 3D printed parts using an infrared laser. The Fraunhofer Institute for Material and Beam Technology IWS in Dresden, Germany, has designed a green laser with wavelength much shorter than the typical infrared laser to melt copper powder during additive manufacturing. It enables new production approaches that previously could not be achieved with pure copper.

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Classic car specialist turns to ExOne binder jet AM for vintage Ferrari part

HV3DWorks LLC, Sewickley, Pennsylvania, USA, recently used Binder Jetting (BJT) Additive Manufacturing technology from The ExOne Company, North Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, USA, to enable the reproduction of a carburettor for a vintage Ferrari. HV3DWorks specialises in the restoration of collector cars using AM parts. HV3DWorks’ client approached the company for assistance in producing replacement parts.

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Renishaw additive manufacturing technology delivers replica of 12th century Gloucester candlestick

Global engineering technologies company Renishaw is working in partnership with Gloucester Cathedral and the Victoria and Albert (V&A) Museum, London, to recreate the Gloucester Candlestick, using metal additive manufacturing (AM). The original candlestick is on show at the V&A Museum, while Renishaw’s AM rendition will be displayed and used at Gloucester Cathedral.

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Velo3D develops process for 3D printing aluminium

California-based Velo3D has announced the ‘commercial release’ of a production process for additively manufactured parts in aluminium F357 on its Sapphire metal 3D printing system. The foundry-grade aluminium alloy, which is suitable for the laser powder-bed fusion (LPBF) process, enables the 3D printing of parts that have traditionally been manufactured using casting practices.

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Aluminium World Trade Fair postponed

Now to be held from 18 to 20 May 2021. Aluminium, the world’s leading trade fair for the aluminium industry, which was to take place in Düsseldorf from 6 to 8 October 2020, has been postponed to 18 to 20 May 2021 due to the serious consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic. The accompanying Aluminium Conference will also be postponed into the next year.

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German foundry industry expects drastic drop in sales for 2020

Germany’s foundry industry is cutting back on investments and expects drastically falling sales in 2020. Whether the recession will affect employment will probably also depend on the extension of short-time working compensation and the performance of the vehicle manufacturing industry. The June survey focused on employment, sales development and the evaluation of the economic stimulus package.

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74th World Foundry Congress delayed until 2022

The 74th World Foundry Congress has been postponed until October 2022. The event was due to be held in October of this year in Busan, South Korea, but the organising committee, the Korea Foundry Society and the World Foundry Organisation (WFO) have decided to postpone due to the current COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic. The new date for the 74th WFC will be 16 to 20th October 2022, at the same venue of the former programme – Bexco, Busan, Korea.

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Ghana’s first modern foundry and machine tooling centre to be constructed

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has cut the sod for the construction of Ghana’s first modern foundry and machine tooling centre, which will produce agro-processing machines and equipment, farming implements, and spare parts for maintenance and repairs. Cutting the sod for the commencement of construction took place on Monday, 31st August 2020.

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Australian government may restrict scrap exports

Government claims it is targeting “unprocessed waste” shipments. The Recycling and Waste Reduction Bill 2020, on track to be approved in Australia, has been designed to ban the export of waste glass, plastics, tires and paper. The bill’s authors seek to establish a system to classify some materials as exportable, while trade in others will be banned.

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In lieu of scrap, China imports semi-finished aluminium

The volume of unwrought aluminium imported into China surged in June 2020. Citing data from the General Administration of Customs of the People’s Republic of China (GACC, formerly GAC), Shanghai Metals Market (SMM) says imports of unwrought aluminium alloy “totalled 466 500 metric tons in the first half of 2020, soaring 706 per cent from the same period last year.” The nation’s June 2020 figure of 131 000 metric tons was 754.5 per cent higher compared with a year earlier.

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O.M.LER appoints PT. Makmur Meta Graha Dinamika to represent the company in Indonesia

O.M.LER s.r.l., the Italian company specialising in the manufacture and marketing of O.M.LER pneumatic decoring hammers for foundries, has achieved the challenging goal of entering the Southeast Asian foundry market, with a distributor agreement with PT. Makmur Meta Graha Dinamika, in Indonesia. Its headquarters are in Jakarta, and they will now be representing O.M.LER in Southeast Asia.

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Novel 3D printed device demonstrates enhanced capture of carbon dioxide emissions

The Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory researchers have designed and additively manufactured a first-of-its-kind aluminium device that enhances the capture of carbon dioxide emitted from fossil fuel plants and other industrial processes. Solutions for reducing global emissions of heat-trapping greenhouse gases such as CO2 address the continued use of low-cost, domestic fossil fuel resources while mitigating potential climate impacts.

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August 2020

New process combines best of 3D printing and metal casting

A British manufacturer says it has combined the best of 3D printing and casting by offering a wide range of materials without the high costs and limitations of tooling. Every manufacturing process has its limitations, whether it is traditional casting or direct 3D metal printing. High tooling cost and long lead-time are challenges of the traditional casting process whilst material compatibility is a restricting factor for direct 3D metal printing.

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Brazil’s Asia steel scrap export route blooms amid renewed trade opportunities

Brazilian sellers have ramped up containerised exports of steel scrap into South Asian markets over the past year but this explosion in export sales is unlikely to be a long-term trend, sources have told Fastmarkets. Scrap collectors and processors in the country have traditionally sold the vast majority of their stocks in the domestic market, with only the excess being exported.

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Production of high-tech components for the BMW iNEXT starts in Landshut

The light metal casting department provides the housing for the future electric drive motor and also developed the globally unique Injector Casting Process. Preparations to launch the all-new BMW iNEXT are progressing at full swing. The company intends to start production of this new model in 2021 at its Dingolfing plant.

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3D printing technology optimises pistons for the powerful Porsche 911 GT2 RS

Porsche starts testing 3D printed pistons that are 10% lighter. Automakers are experimenting extensively with 3D printing for all variety of automotive parts from simple interior trim pieces to parts as complex as brake callipers. Porsche is taking the technology a step further by experimenting with 3D printing engine internals.

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Tesla’s single-piece Model Y casting has not been kept a secret

When Elon Musk was interviewed in an episode of the Third Row Podcast earlier this year, he noted that the Model Y crossover’s rear underbody would eventually be built with a single-piece casting. This is quite a bold target, and one that can make the Model Y into one of the most cost-effective vehicles on the market today, electric or otherwise.

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What’s the difference between a $20 and $200 cast iron skillet?

A cast iron skillet should retain heat well and put satisfying sears on all sorts of food. So what makes the $200 versions better at that than the $20 ones? New cooks can be intimidated by cast iron cookware’s need for seasoning, the age-old soap or no soap cleaning question and the seemingly infinite crackpot cast iron hacks, writes Will Price of Gear Patrol.

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First 3D printed sump cover for F110 engine

General Electric (GE) recently shared the results of their year-long partnership with the US Air Force (USAF) to create additive manufacturing solutions for their aircraft supply chain. GE Additive and GE Aviation proposed the collaboration in 2019 for the Air Force to adopt metal additive technology to address gaps in readiness, sustainment and affordability. The Rapid Sustainment Office (RSO) oversaw the application and scaling of technology.

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ExOne launches sand 3D printing network powered by over 40 binder jetting machines

ExOne has announced the launch of an international Sand 3D printing network made up of more than 40 binder jet printing platforms throughout North America. The network has been set up to provide greater access of ExOne’s sand 3D printing technologies to manufacturers working in industries such as aerospace and automotive.

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3D Systems opens up 3D printing applications with new materials

3D Systems has added five new materials to its polymer 3D printing portfolio as the company aims to address a broader portfolio of additive applications for its Figure 4 technology. The new resins include Figure 4 Rubber-65A BLK, Accura Fidelity, Accura Bond, Accura Patch and Jewel Master GRY, with each catering to specific uses across industrial and casting applications.

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GA-ASI completes first test flight with metal 3D printed part

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc (GA-ASI), a US aeronautics company, has completed its first test flight with a metal 3D printed part featured onboard its SkyGuardian Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) system. GA-ASI’s strategy for scaling metal additive manufacturing across its RPA platforms has been supported by AddWorks, the consultation service of 3D printer OEM GE Additive, since the first half of 2019.

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Improve wear characteristics with cryogenic processing

Cryogenic processing, the deep chilling of tool steel so that the molecular makeup of the metal is brought to cryogenic stillness in order to improve wear characteristics, is not a new technology. In the past, tool makers would bury components in snow banks for weeks or even months to improve their wear resistance. Castings were always left outside in the cold for months or years to age and stabilise.

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June 2020

Norican launches Monitizer | PRESCRIBE for automatic process optimisation

First product launched since Norican’s industry-exclusive partnership with South African company DataProphet. Norican Global A/S (Norican), a leading metallic parts enhancement company, has launched Monitizer | PRESCRIBE, an Artificial Intelligence (AI) service that rapidly optimises production and reduces scrap in real-life foundry environments.

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Mozambique: Stolen rails found in Chinese foundry

Maputo: Earlier this year the Mozambican police on found a large number of stolen rails and other railway material in a Chinese-owned foundry in the Ceramica neighbourhood of the central city of Beira, according to a report in the independent daily O Pais. The police had difficulty accessing the interior of the foundry.

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Metso reviewing Vereeniging operations in South Africa

Metso says it is initiating consultations to evaluate the potential closure or other alternatives for its operations in Vereeniging, Gauteng, South Africa. The Vereeniging unit provides pumps, spare parts, consumables, and repair services for the mining industry and has around 200 employees, the company says.

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Lack of synergy between Denel and Armscor concerns joint committee on defence

Parliamentary committee concerned at failure of Denel to deliver on key army project. The Joint Standing Committee on Defence has resolved to ask the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans to intervene in the inability of Denel Land Systems to meet its contractual obligations to Armscor with respect to the Hoefyester project, and report back to the committee.

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Automotive industry achieves record trade surplus

And expects to improve trade balance further in 2020, subject to the global impact of COVID-19. South Africa’s automotive industry achieved its fifth consecutive trade surplus in 2019 and its highest level on record. Subject to the global impact of COVID-19 and an anticipated weak domestic market, it is expected to improve its trade balance further in 2020, according to the latest Automotive Industry Export Council (AIEC) export manual.

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Steel industry in financial distress because of lockdown

The Department of Trade and Industry has warned that the steel industry would exit the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown in severe financial distress with potential plant closures and job losses. The department’s Trade and Industrial Policy Strategies (Tips) said the industry could experience a devastating R1 billion negative cash cost on the five-week lockdown unless the government intervened.

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World Foundry Organisation elects new president

The World Foundry Organisation (WFO) has elected Umur Denizci of the Turkish Foundry Denizciler Dokumculuk as the organisation’s new president for 2020 and 2021. The honorary role will see Denizci work with the WFO secretariat team, its executive board and the WFO member associations to further develop the organisation in the coming years.

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Electra Mining Africa 2020 cancelled

Organisers of Southern Africa’s mining, manufacturing, automation, electrical and power trade exhibition Electra Mining Africa, Specialised Exhibitions, reports that the 2020 edition of the trade fair has been cancelled as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. This year’s show had been scheduled to take place from September 7 to 11 in Johannesburg. The next edition of the trade fair will now be held from September 5 to 9, 2022.

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April 2020

Ford on track to build 700 000th Ranger in South Africa this year

Local production of the Ford Ranger continues to make a significant impact on the South African economy. Overall, Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa contributes over one per cent to the country’s GDP and tops the country’s light commercial vehicle exports, with Rangers exported from Ford’s Silverton Assembly Plant in Pretoria to more than 100 global markets.

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AMSA acquires South Africa’s only producer of heavy sections of long steel

The Competition Tribunal has unconditionally approved steel manufacturer ArcelorMittal South Africa’s (AMSA’s) acquisition of the manufacturing and production of the structural steel and rail business of Highveld Structural Mill (HSM), a subsidiary of Evraz Highveld Steel and Vanadium.

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Foundry sector in India seeks government help to double exports

The Indian foundry industry has sought government intervention to more than double its exports in the next five years. The domestic foundry sector is the second largest globally in terms of production, and believes it has huge advantages over others, including the market leader China, in terms of labour and manufacturing costs.

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ExOne have announced that 15 new metal, ceramic and composite materials have been qualified for 3D printing

The ExOne Company, a global leader in industrial sand and metal 3D printers using binder jetting technology, has announced that 15 new metal, ceramic and composite materials have been qualified by ExOne and its customers for 3D printing on the company’s family of metal 3D printers.

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Metso opens new foundry in India

Metso announced in 2018 a greenfield foundry project in Vadodara, India, with a target to increase the casting wear parts capacity for the mining and aggregate industries. The first pour event was celebrated in India in February 2020 when the foundry started production for customer deliveries for local and global markets. “The state-of-the-art foundry will have a strong role in our global foundry network.”

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Foseco opens Ramos Arizpe, Mexico plant with an investment of US$20 million

With an investment of 20 million dollars, the British brand Foseco, a company dedicated to the foundry sector, belonging to the Vesuvius Group, has celebrated the official opening of its plant in Ramos Arizpe, Coahuila, Mexico. The industrial building features an area of 10 000m² and started operations in mid-October 2019, generating about 200 direct jobs gradually.

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Mechanical engineering industry in Germany experiences a difficult year

The mechanical engineering industry in Germany is experiencing an even more difficult year than expected. The burdens that have already been felt for some time – trade conflicts, global economic weakness, structural change in the automotive industry – are now being compounded by the Coronavirus with its unforeseeable consequences for the economy as a whole.

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Jingye Group completes its buyout of British Steel

Jingye Group, the steelmaker, has completed its buyout of British Steel, reviving a business that was placed into compulsory liquidation last May and saving more than 3 000 jobs. In a statement the group said it had completed the acquisition of British Steel’s UK and Dutch assets from the official receiver and confirmed it planned to invest US$1.5 billion in the company.

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Eskom staffers caught in cahoots with scrapyard in huge theft operation

Since President Cyril Ramaphosa pinned the return of load shedding on sabotage, Eskom has led an internal investigation into the conduct of its employees. Sure enough two employees who were under surveillance were caught preparing to courier a truckload of conductors to a scrapyard in the east side of Johannesburg.

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February 2020

Italpresse Gauss builds die-casting machine with a closing force of 5 700 tons

Italpresse Gauss, an Italian manufacturer of fully automated, digitally enabled die-casting technology, is set to deliver the first toggle-free two-platen die-casting machine with a closing force of 5 700 tons. The TF 5700 was introduced in 2018 and is currently being made for one of the leading car manufacturers in Germany.

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Anticipation builds for Machine Tools Africa 2020

Nasrec Expo Centre, Johannesburg will be the venue for metalworking suppliers and manufacturing companies to exhibit their products from 12 to 15 May 2020. Anticipation levels are already building despite there still being five months to go before the doors open for Machine Tools Africa 2020, South Africa’s premier metalworking supplier and manufacturing technologies event.

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There could still be hope for Saldanha Steel: Expressions of interest received

Government urges AMSA to take all steps possible to retain jobs but AMSA says offers are not commercially substantive. In an official statement released in December 2019 The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) said it has received expressions of interest by two parties to buy the Saldanha Steel works from ArcelorMittal South Africa (AMSA).

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2019 a record year for Volkswagen Group South Africa

Uitenhage plant sets new record for full-year production – 161 954 vehicles manufactured by VWSA in 2019. The Volkswagen Group South Africa (VWSA) plant in Uitenhage ended 2019 on a high note, achieving an all-time record for production in a single year. This figure surpasses their previous record of 137 758 vehicles produced in 2011.

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9th BRICS International Foundry Forum

The 9th BRICS International Foundry Forum took place during the 18th FENAF (Latin American Foundry Fair) exhibition that was held in the Pro Magno Event Center in São Paulo, Brazil in September 2019. At the same time ABIFA, the Brazilian Foundry Association, celebrated their 50th anniversary. However, there were two notable absentees from the forum – India and South Africa.

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What does the future hold for Germany’s auto industry?

Germany’s strength for the past half-century has been its automotive industry. The big question now is whether that also will become its biggest vulnerability. Carmakers built just 4.7 million cars in Germany in 2019, industry data showed, squeezing production to its lowest level since 1997. The powerful VDA carmakers’ club said output had tumbled nine per cent year-on-year, blaming weaker international demand for the fall.

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International Aluminium Die-Casting Awards 2020

For many years, the Aluminium Die-Casting Award has proven to be a successful platform for demonstrating the high quality standards of aluminium die-castings. The aim of the competition is to boost interest in aluminium. The winners of the International Aluminium Die-Casting Award 2020 have been announced. In all, four castings were awarded prizes at EUROGUSS 2020 in Nuremberg, while two others received special commendations.

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December 2019

MHI and Primetals Technologies to acquire ABP Induction

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) and Primetals Technologies will acquire ABP from CM Acquisitions, a Chicago-based private equity firm. MHI and Primetals Technologies will jointly take ABP’s shares. Future business activities will be conducted in close cooperation with and under the leadership of Primetals Technologies.

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Scania invests in Omega Sinto’s mechanical green sand to core sand reclamation system

Didion and Sinto will provide sand processing and reclamation systems for the 90 000 tons per annum iron casting operation, starting up in 2020. Construction is proceeding toward a 2020 start-up for Scania AB’s €129 million greenfield foundry near Södertälje, Sweden.

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Steel import duties might be utilised as a weapon in a trade war. However, it is not appropriate for the South African steel industry

At the time of the introduction of duties in 2015, NEASA cautioned government of the consequences of introducing import duties to protect South Africa’s steel monopoly, Arcelor Mittal South Africa (AMSA), calling it a “slow poison” causing the inevitable and painful demise of the steel downstream.

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Ramaphosa launches new hub for vehicle industry in Tshwane

President Cyril Ramaphosa has recently launched a new automotive hub outside Pretoria, which will host new factories for vehicle part suppliers. The City of Tshwane has made available 162 hectares of land for the new Tshwane Automotive Special Economic Zone (SEZ), which will be built close to Fords assembly plant in Silverton, Pretoria.

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Transformation fund launched by South Africa’s seven vehicle OEMs

It means the participating OEMs – BMW, Ford, Isuzu, Nissan, Toyota, Mercedes-Benz and Volkswagen – will, for the first time, be able to meaningfully participate and comply with all five elements of the broad-based black economic empowerment (B-BBEE) generic scorecard, specifically the ownership element.

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Pfisterer changes name to Vexila

Pfisterer (Pty) Ltd, one of the largest manufacturers of composite insulators and related products on the African continent, has announced the completion of its rebranding initiative. In future the company will trade under the name of Vexila. The Vexila aluminium gravity die-casting foundry has a number of furnaces at its disposal.

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2019 WFO Global Foundry Report

The World Foundry Organisation has published the 2019 WFO Global Foundry Report, giving a snapshot indication of the current state of the global foundry sector. The report includes detailed analysis from 26 of the WFO member countries to provide information on output trends, market strengths and relevant issues such as energy costs and skills analysis.

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Bankruptcy: Next crisis for the former Neue Halberg Guss

Just over a year after the rescue of Neue Halberg Guss, the automotive supplier Guswerke Saarbrücken has applied for insolvency, according to reports. Apparently the district court of Sulzbach, Germany appointed Franz Abel von Abel and colleagues as the provisional administrator.

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October 2019

Imerys promotes Durandal and Kersand moulding sand at GIFA 2019

“The final quality of the metal casting is the result of a tremendous amount of controlled parameters inside the foundry. On a daily basis, parameters such as pouring temperature, sand quality, moulding conditions, etcetera are leveraged by metal casters to balance quality versus the yield of production, which usually have an opposite trend.”

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Akhani 3D commercial additive manufacturing service bureau launched by local experts

“Akhani 3D, a newly established venture between Rapid 3D and Kemtek, has been created to meet the rising demand from within the manufacturing sector for a turnkey AM (Additive manufacturing/3D printing) production service that translates ideas into objects as efficiently as possible,” said Akhani 3D Managing Director David Bullock.

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Formaldehyde emission limits: HA offers solutions for the cold-box sector

Stricter emission limits for formaldehyde, which will also apply to older plants as from 2020 onwards, present many foundries with an additional challenge. Hüttenes-Albertus (HA) is ready to provide its customers with appropriate solutions, namely specifically developed innovations for cold-box binder systems, additives and coatings.

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Tesla files patent to die-cast vehicle frame

Tesla has wisely made arrangements to quieten all the critics crowing about its production capabilities – the company just obtained the patent for a giant machine that will create the entire body frame of a car in a single press. It’s called the Multi-Directional Unibody Casting Machine. Tesla filed a patent for a casting machine that could help streamline production for future vehicle projects.

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Loramendi and ASK Chemicals enter alliance with voxeljet to industrialise core tooling production using 3D printing

German 3D printer manufacturer voxeljet has entered into an alliance with Loramendi, a Spanish tooling maker, and ASK Chemicals, a global foundry material-science company, to develop the Industrialisation of Core Printing (ICP) technology, and is also reportedly the world’s first fully automated 3D printed core production solution.

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2019 Winners announced for Altair Enlighten Award

Ferrari, FCA, Material Science Corporation, ZF, Alba Tooling & Engineering Automotive Management Consulting GmbH, csi entwicklungstechnik GmbH take top honours. Altair, a global technology company providing solutions in product development, high-performance computing and data intelligence, has announced the winners of the 7th annual Altair Enlighten Award.

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Aluminium alloy breaks the critical 500 MPa UTS mark

As part of a recent research project involving aero-engine giant Rolls-Royce and additive manufacturing equipment specialist Renishaw, heat-treated parts produced using A20X™ Powder have achieved an ultimate tensile strength (UTS) of 511 MPa, a yield strength of 440 MPa and elongation of 13 per cent, putting the powder at the forefront of high-strength aluminium additive manufacturing.

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August 2019

Ford’s expansion unleashes new potential for South Africa

Company says it is to add 1 200 jobs from August and is introducing a third shift at the vehicle assembly plant in Silverton to the west of Pretoria. Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa (FMCSA) will employ 1 200 new employees from August 2019 to meet the growing international and local demand for the New Ranger, Ranger Raptor and Everest models.

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AMSA’S 2 000 job cuts and the ongoing steel industry woes are self-inflicted

The National Employers’ Association of South Africa (NEASA) says the potential loss of 2 000 jobs at Arcelor Mittal South Africa (AMSA) will have a massive effect on the current unemployment rate in the country. Recently AMSA said it was mulling a large-scale restructuring exercise, which might affect more than 2 000 jobs, citing a difficult economic environment.

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MHI and Primetals Technologies to acquire ABP Induction Systems

It has been announced that Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) and Primetals Technologies will acquire ABP Induction Systems (ABP), a global manufacturer and servicer of induction furnaces and heating systems from CM Acquisitions, a Chicago, US-based private equity firm. The completion of the acquisition of ABP is subject to the approval of the relevant authorities.

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Sinto forms Joint Venture Company in Turkey

The Sinto Group, a world-leading manufacturer of foundry equipment, has announced that they reached an agreement for the establishment of a Joint Venture Company in Turkey with their current Turkish sales representative Expert Mumessillik Tur. ve Tic. Ltd. Sti. (Expert). The new company will be named Sinto Turkey Makina Sanayi ve Ticaret Anonim Sirketi (Sinto Turkey).

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MAGMA, Hüttenes-Albertus (HA) and Laempe Mössner Sinto join forces to present digital core production

Three leading technology providers in their fields, MAGMA GmbH, which specialises in the virtual optimisation of foundry processes, Hüttenes-Albertus (HA), a leading supplier of foundry chemicals and Laempe Mössner Sinto GmbH, the core shooting machine manufacturer, have joined forces to establish a long-term partnership.

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Amsted Rail announces name change for South African operation – Amsted Foundry Solutions SA

Amsted Rail, the global leader in manufacturing bogie systems for the heavy haul freight market, has established its latest company – Amsted Foundry Solutions SA, with its foundries located in Johannesburg, South Africa. This newly created company is partially owned by both Amsted Rail and South Africa’s Industrial Development Corporation (IDC).

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June 2019

No retrenchments at Hillside aluminium smelter

In addition to voluntary separation and early retirement packages, a salary freeze for the next three years has also been agreed. Retrenchments at South32’s Hillside smelter will be avoided as an estimated 400, some say 500, employees have opted for voluntary separation and early retirement packages.

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Tracking trends for metalcasting

What shapes the future for foundries and diecasters? Follow these five areas of development to know what’s important to the technologies and the businesses. GIFA 2019 has been circled on many calendars as the time and place for announcing new business plans, introducing new process technologies, and unveiling new projects in design and research.

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AMRC Castings enhances 3D sand printing capability

As one of the first foundries to take advantage of large-scale 3D sand printing technology, the AMRC Castings Group has recently enhanced both its capacity and physical envelope. Capable of producing complex moulds and cores for oil, gas, aerospace and automotive without the need for dedicated tooling, the technology has been exploited for R&D, pre-production and full-scale production volumes.

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Foundry chemicals group ASK put up for sale – sources

ASK Chemicals, a manufacturer of chemicals used in foundries, has been put up for sale by its private equity owner amid a flurry of dealmaking in the chemicals sector, people close to the matter said, it has been reported by Reuters. Buyout group Rhone Capital is working with Citi on the deal, which may value the Germany-based supplier of binders, additives, feeders, filters and metallurgical products at up to 500 million euros ($559 million), the report indicated.

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April 2019

Vesuvius acquires CCPI

Acquisition sees Vesuvius expand in aluminium. Molten metal flow engineering and technology company Vesuvius has announced that it has agreed to acquire CCPI, a speciality refractory producer. CCPI focuses on tundish (steel continuous casting) applications (65% of sales) and aluminium (35% of sales). The company is based in Ohio, USA, and will become part of Vesuvius’ Advanced Refractories division.

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German company KS Huayu AluTech introduces new casting process for highly complex engine block geometries and electric motor housings

KS Huayu AluTech GmbH has introduced a new casting process onto the market. This joint venture between Rheinmetall Automotive and China’s Huayu Automotive Systems has developed a production process for the new Chinese plant in Guangde, one that is particularly suitable for highly complex engine block geometries and electric motor housings.

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Largest cast bronze sculpture in UK travels to Plymouth by barge

The UK’s largest cast bronze sculpture has been unveiled after two years in the making. The ‘young, powerful’ female figure, entitled Messenger, has been cast at a foundry in a tiny Welsh village, using the ancient technique of lost wax casting. It will stand in front of the Theatre Royal Plymouth, which commissioned Joseph Hillier to create the work. Hillier was inspired by the split-second pose of an actor rehearsing for Othello on the theatre’s stage.

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Dongfeng and Maxion Wheels form aluminium wheel joint venture

Maxion Wheels, one of the world’s largest wheel manufacturers, has announced an agreement to form a new passenger car aluminium wheel joint venture with Dongfeng Motor Parts and Components Group, one of China’s largest automotive parts companies. The new legal entity, Dongfeng Maxion Wheels, will build a new two million per year capacity plant in Hubei Province, China, with series production scheduled for the second half of 2020.

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February 2019

Understanding 3D sand printers and binder technologies

AM for cores and moulds is gaining popularity because of the flexibility and complexity it offers in production, but productivity is critical to the long-term prospects. Additive manufacturing of sand cores and moulds has attracted the attention of many foundries in recent years due to the process’ unique ability to form core shapes that cannot be manufactured using conventional coremaking techniques.

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US casting sales reach $33.1 billion

Following a dip in 2016 to $27.3 million, the US casting industry recovered quickly and strongly in 2017 and 2018. Growth is expected to continue in 2019 with a 1.9% to $33.7 billion in casting sales. In the short-term, through 2021, the US metal casting industry has a forecasted annual growth rate of 2.4%. Through 2027, this report is estimating a 2.4% long-term annual growth rate for the industry.

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GE Additive helps Callaway Golf Company break the mould to redesign putter head

As the team from GE Additive readily admits, Callaway knows a thing or two about creating top-level golfing equipment, including the putters and irons with which the brand is globally synonymous. So, it was for a very special purpose that the additive manufacturing experts were invited to rework one of Callaway’s latest putters in its Odyssey range, a favourite among pros and amateurs alike.

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GF Casting Solutions divests from iron casting plants

The trend towards lighter vehicles continues to have a substantial impact on the automotive industry. In this context, GF Casting Solutions, a division of GF, will have a stronger focus on light metal casting whilst reducing its presence in iron casting in Europe. As a consequence, the iron casting plants located in Singen and Mettmann (Germany) have been divested to members of the management of GF Casting Solutions, effective retroactively as of 1 December 2018.

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Alcoa: Non-heat treat HPDC foundry alloys for car body structures

Environmental and governmental pressures continue to push automakers worldwide to search for new areas of light weighting, and car structural components prove to be the new, fast-growing application for aluminium. This is true for both conventional internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles, and electric ones. In addition, electric vehicles extensively use aluminium for other components, such as battery housings.

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Bentonite market to hit US$1.85 billion by 2024 with rising demand for smart infrastructure

A key strategy developed by players in the global bentonite market to outshine their rivals is expanding manufacturing capacity. They are seen focusing hard on manufacturing process differentiation and expansion of manufacturing product portfolio to steal a march over competitors. Regulating costs with delivering quality services is a key strategy of most businesses present in the global bentonite market.

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Elkem acquires TM Technology Ltd.

Elkem ASA has acquired the UK company TM Technology Ltd, a manufacturer of the foundry alloy Tenbloc, which is used in the mould inoculation of ductile and grey iron, and its production facilities. Elkem ASA is based in Norway, and is one of the world’s leading companies for environmentally responsible production of materials. Elkem manufactures a wide range of inoculants, MgFeSi alloys and pre-conditioners for the production of cast iron.

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Indian foundry industry is set to double its growth rate in the next five years

In a statement issued at the conclusion of the 67th Indian Foundry Congress (IFC) at the India Expo Mart in Greater Noida, IIF President Shashi Jain said the industry, which employs around five million people directly and two million people indirectly, will generate additional employment for three million families in the next five years.

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Metso to increase its foundry capacity in India to meet the growing global demand for cast wears for mining and aggregate industries

Metso is investing in the development of its foundry capacity in Vadodara, India. The initial investment includes the acquisition of the property and foundry assets of a privately owned foundry project, Mega Cast. Metso expects to invest a total of approximately EUR 25 million to purchase the assets and to develop the foundry by 2020.

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Local foundry equipment supplier loses long court battle with Omega Foundry Machinery

Omega Foundry Machinery began the proceedings against Lauds Foundry Equipment (Pty) Ltd in 2015 when it alleged that the company’s copyright had been infringed by Lauds Foundry Equipment (Pty) Ltd, and before Omega Foundry Machinery had signed a joint venture merger agreement with another South African company.

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Lauds Foundry Equipment (Pty) Ltd right of reply statement

“The default judgement states that we are not to infringe on Omega’s copyright and we emphatically state that we have no problem adhering to the default judgement as we have never infringed on Omega’s copyright, and we currently have no product that will infringe on their copyright, nor will we ever have.” – Kevin van Niekerk, CEO of Lauds Foundry Equipment, assisted by Wayne Teich Attorneys.

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