Nemak is a leading provider of innovative lightweighting solutions for the global automotive industry, specializing in the development and manufacturing of aluminum components for powertrain and body structure applications. The company employs more than 23,000 people at 38 facilities worldwide, generating revenues of US$4.7 billion in 2018.
Nemak develops alloy that withstands above-average temperatures
Since 2012, there has been an interest in the development of alloys that can withstand higher temperatures in engines to reduce emissions and improve performance. The US department of energy expressed its desire to encourage OEMs and suppliers to find solutions to this challenge. Nemak, in collaboration with Fiat Chrysler and the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, developed an alloy that can resist heat up to 250 degrees vs current alloys that can tolerate only up to 220 degrees.
This was a joint effort with Nemak Europe. Due to the magnitude of the challenge, the R&D team located in our plant in Linz, also developed an alloy to solve the engine “high temperature” dilemma. The two alloys are tailored for our current manufacturing processes.
The Nemak project team formed by Andres Rodriguez, Alejandro Gonzalez and Jose Talamantes, together with Fiat Chrysler and ORNL, developed a virtual model to execute a thermodynamic simulation and obtained 18 different compositions apt for testing; after the test, two of them delivered the positive output needed with alloys stable even at temperatures of up to 300 degrees.
As of today, the project team, together with FCA, is still working on fine-tuning this alloy to ensure optimal performance on high and low temperature conditions and improving ductility.