alcoa aluminum

Η Alcoa, ένας από τους μεγαλύτερους κατασκευαστές αλουμινίου παγκοσμίως, υπόσχεται πως έχει αναπτύξει έναν νέο τύπο αλουμινίου, το Micromill. Η Alcoa κατοχύρωσε το Micromill με δίπλωμα ευρεσιτεχνίας, το οποίο αλλάζει τη μικροδομή του μετάλλου, επιτρέποντας έτσι στην εταιρία να κατασκευάζει κατά 40% πιο εύπλαστο και κατά 30% πιο δυνατό αλουμίνιο, σε σχέση με τον τύπο αλουμινίου που χρησιμοποιεί σήμερα για το κλάδο των αυτοκινητοβιομηχανιών.

Ο CEO της Alcoa, Klaus Kleinfeld δήλωσε:

Το Micromill της Alcoa αντιπροσωπεύει μια σημαντική εξέλιξη στα υλικά αλουμινίου. Αυτή η τεχνολογία θα ξεκλειδώσει την επόμενη γενιά των προϊόντων της αυτοκινητοβιομηχανίας με τη δύναμη, την ικανότητα μορφοποίησης και την ποιότητα της επιφάνειας, σε συνδυασμούς που ποτέ πριν δεν ήταν δυνατοί. Θα επιτρέψει στους πελάτες μας να επαναπροσδιορίσουν τα όρια σχεδιασμού των μελλοντικών οχημάτων τους, μειώνοντας το βάρος τους, κάνοντας τα πιο αποδοτικά, ασφαλέστερα και πιο μοντέρνα.

alcoa aluminum 2 (1)

Παραδείγματος χάρη, ένα φύλο Micromill αλουμινίου είναι ευκολότερο να κοπεί, και να πάρει περίπλοκη μορφή σχήματος, όπως αυτά των εσωτερικών πάνελ των θυρών και των εξωτερικών φτερών, τα οποία σήμερα, ως επί το πλείστον, είναι κατασκευασμένα από χάλυβα. Επίσης η τεχνολογία μειώνει και τον χρόνο χύτευσης του αλουμινίου, μιας και απαιτεί μόλις 20 λεπτά για να μετατραπεί το λιωμένο αλουμινίου σε ρολό φύλου αλουμινίου.

Δελτίο Τύπου

Alcoa Unveils Next-Generation Aluminum Materials Through Breakthrough Manufacturing Technology

MicromillTM to Unlock the Future of Automotive Aluminum Products

  • Micromill produces automotive alloy that is 40 percent more formable and 30 percent stronger than incumbent aluminum, while meeting stringent automotive surface quality requirements
  • Automotive parts made with Alcoa Micromill® material will be twice as formable and 30 percent lighter than parts made from high strength steel
  • Alcoa Micromill reduces the time to transform molten metal into aluminum coil from 20 days to 20 minutes
  • Micromill technology has the flexibility to transition seamlessly between producing rolled products for automotive, industrial and packaging markets
  • Alcoa has completed successful customer product trials and is qualifying Micromill material for next-generation automotive platforms

NEW YORK & PITTSBURGH–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Lightweight metals leader Alcoa (NYSE:AA) today unveiled breakthrough manufacturing technology, the Alcoa MicromillTM, that will manufacture the most advanced aluminum sheet on the market. The Micromill will enable the next generation of automotive aluminum products, and equip Alcoa to capture growing demand.

The Alcoa-patented Micromill process dramatically changes the microstructure of the metal, allowing the production of an aluminum alloy for automotive applications that has 40 percent greater formability and 30 percent greater strength than the incumbent aluminum used today while meeting stringent automotive surface quality requirements.

Additionally, automotive parts made with Micromill material will be twice as formable and at least 30 percent lighter than parts made from high strength steel. The Micromill alloy has formability characteristics comparable to mild steels.

“Alcoa Micromill represents a major breakthrough in aluminum materials,” said Alcoa Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Klaus Kleinfeld. “This technology will unlock the next generation of automotive products with strength, formability and surface quality combinations never before possible. It will allow our customers to redefine the boundaries of vehicle design, supporting the creation of lighter, more fuel efficient, safer and more stylish vehicles for the future.”

Micromill aluminum sheet that is 40 percent more formable is easier to shape into intricate forms, such as the inside panels of automobile doors and external fenders, which today are generally made of steel. The 30 percent increase in material strength will improve dent resistance, enabling the production of automotive sheet that is thinner and even lighter than previous generations. Automakers will also benefit from reduced system cost by streamlining the number of aluminum alloys used in their manufacturing process.

It will also be the fastest, most productive aluminum casting and rolling system in the world. A traditional rolling mill takes around 20 days to turn molten metal into coil, Micromill does it in just 20 minutes.

The Micromill also has a significantly smaller footprint than a traditional rolling mill, at just one quarter the size, and lowers energy use by 50 percent. The Alcoa Micromill technology and the differentiated metal it will produce are covered by more than 130 patents around the world.

According to Ducker Worldwide, North American aluminum automotive sheet content per vehicle is expected to increase elevenfold between 2012 and 2025 as consumers demand cars that are lighter and more fuel efficient. The Micromill continuous casting technology is designed to meet that growing demand for automotive sheet, with the flexibility to serve the industrial and packaging markets as well. The mill can easily shift product mix, and transition to different alloys without ever stopping a cast.

Alcoa has secured a strategic development customer, and from its pilot Micromill facility in San Antonio, TX, has also conducted successful customer trials. Those trials have validated the Micromill material’s unique characteristics, surface quality for exterior panels and overall performance. Alcoa is qualifying the material for use in next-generation automotive platforms.