This Thursday, 21 April 2011, I have the honor to speak to the Detroit-Windsor Chapter of the American Foundry Society ( afsdetroit.com ). The topic of my presentation is, “ADI- A Green Alternative”. Did you know that nearly 25% of a vehicle’s life-cycle energy is embodied in its manufacture? When you then consider battery and battery/hybrid vehicles the life cycle energy contained in the vehicle’s manufacture can rise to nearly 50%. Austempered Ductile Iron is a low energy material that can cost effectively replace aluminum and steel weldments, castings and forgings. Following the lead of the Architectural community I investigated the concept of “embodied energy”; the energy contained in a component from mining it, forming it, machining it and finishing it; through recycling…..all inclusive. The results showed a clear correlation between the embodied energy in a component and its price. Going further, one can calculate the embodied energy necessary to produce the components out of different material/process combinations to achieve the same mechanical results. In this presentation I will use case studies to demonstrate the concept of embodied energy and to compare Austempered Ductile Iron (ADI) to other, competing technologies. Join me at Vladimir’s for some good food, good friends and an ADI talk……what could be better?
The Applied Process team is just back from the 115th American Foundry Society Casting Congress in Schaumburg, Illinois and it was a good one. Everybody is bouncing back nicely from the Great Recession and demand for castings is rising smartly. Demand for Austempered Ductile Iron (ADI) is no exception. Visitors stopped by the AP booth and shared their experiences (and Dr. Kathy’s home-made cookies).
Numerous attendees were actively looking for equipment to increase the throughput and productivity of their metal casting plants. At the Hoyt Memorial Lecture, Denny Dotson, of Dotson Iron Castings (www.dotson.com ) raised the curtain a bit on Saugus 2, a collaborative “foundry in a box” that is slated to be the first greenfield cast iron foundry in the US since 1974…….principal customer, location and collaborators to be announced…..but he claims they’ll be “pouring iron in 2013”.
Kathy Hayrynen chaired panels and presented on the AFS Cast Iron Committee’s activities while I presented the paper “ADI- A Green Alternative” in both design and marketing sessions. Vasko, Justin and Henry visited with customers both existing and potential.
Discussions abounded about conversions from steel and aluminum castings, weldments and forgings to ADI……and we’re up to the challenge. I don’t know yet what the final attendance was but the papers were well attended, the show traffic was steady and the mood was positive. It’s great to see our metal casting industry smiling again.