September 23rd, 2015
Last night at the local NADCA Chapter 7 meeting we had a guest speaker, Mr. Dan Twarog President of NADCA. Dan flew out from headquarters in Chicago to present “The State of the Die Cast Industry” Report for the year 2015.
The State of the Industry Report is given annually to the Die Casting industry as a whole by Dan. This Report is communicated to the industry via the Die Cast Engineer’s magazine in the December edition every year.
This year Dan was able to come to New Jersey and personally present his State of the Die Cast Industry to our local die casting companies. The presentation starts off with macro economic data as it relates to die casting, specific market trends in die casting, and usually presents any studies that have been done in the industry.
This year the Report documented early die casting technology (1920’s time frame) with the addition of Iron in the early alloys and the problem with strength and ductility due to Iron additions when the industry was in its infancy. The Report chronogically reviewed the advances made over the years in reducing Iron and adding Strontium to achieve higher strengths for end users.
The drive to achieve thinner walls and higher strengths has brought about a new class of die castings for the automotive industry called Structural Die Castings. These parts are made with high vacuum die casting and adjusted aluminum alloys with better ductility and higher ultimate tensile strength than the standard die cast alloys that are more commonly used.
This market for such die cast components is very large due to light weighting that is occurring in the auto sector globally. Much of the European die casters are doing these types of die castings on a regular basis and the US is starting to catch up with them. A structural die casting can offer a few solutions: combine a number of parts to one die casting, and convert existing parts from steel to aluminum for the light weighting in the car.
Other areas covered in the presentation included:
- New techniques to save energy in a die casting plant
- New heat treat methods to improve die cast alloy mechanical properties
- Pulse spraying of die casting dies
- Additive manufacturing for die repairs
- New die steels and coatings available to improve the life of die cast tooling
- Fabricating die cast cores with 3D printing technology
- Molten metal on demand to eliminate the large furnaces typically used in die casting plants
There was a very lively discussion amongst the attendees at the meeting about the new die casting technology presented and all were very appreciative that Dan personally came to visit.
Premier Engineered Products, located in NJ, utilizes state-of-the-art equipment in manufacturing high-pressure aluminum die castings. This equipment includes robots, computerized process monitoring, die temperature control systems, and late model CNC machine centers that machine the castings produced to exacting dimensions.
With a trained workforce Premier is in a position to offer high-quality and cost-effective aluminum die cast parts to the global market.