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Innovations for Tomorrow – ET’16 to Present Cutting Edge Extrusion Technology

The Eleventh International Aluminum Extrusion Technology Seminar and Exposition (ET ’16), hosted by the Aluminum Extruders Council (AEC) and the ET Foundation, will take place May 2-6, 2016 in downtown Chicago, IL. Held just once every four years, the ET seminar is an educational event presenting leading technical research and information for the aluminum extrusion industry. The seminar addresses relevant topics, such as aluminum profile production, die design and technology, metallurgy, equipment, product applications, and more.

Early Perspectives

Craig Werner, ET seminar committee chairman, noted that preparations for ET ’16 are on schedule, with more than 150 authors having submitted over 170 abstracts. Based on the abstracts submissions, the papers will fit into the following tracks:

  • Billet Processing
  • Extrusion/Die – Practical
  • Extrusion/Die – Theoretical
  • Extrusion Equipment
  • Value-Added
  • Management Issues.

“We’re a bit early in the ET preparation cycle to disclose too many details, but all of the track chairs are excited by the submissions received so far,” explained Werner. “The quantity and quality of abstracts are superb, with excellent new work covering some familiar topics and other important new topics receiving focus as well.”

A few examples from among the many excellent abstracts and papers throughout the ET ’16 technical program from the Extrusion/Die – Theoretical and Value Added tracks are presented here, with observations from track chairs Frank Kraft of Ohio University and David Asher of Bonnell Aluminum.

Extrusion/Die – Theoretical: There tend to be reoccurring themes at ET because technological developments in such areas are vital to the industry, particularly those related to improving quality and minimizing scrap. The papers in this track can be divided into seven distinct categories — Temperature, Weld Quality, Die Design, Microstructure and Crystallographic Texture, Die Friction, FEM Modeling, and Non-Typical.

In particular, there is a very interesting abstract by Christopher W. Jowett and Nick Parson, both of Rio Tinto Alcan, and Yahya Mahmoodkhani, University of Waterloo, Canada, titled, “What Does Exit Temperature Measurement Tell Us?”

Value-Added: This track has some interesting abstracts dealing with innovations in anodizing and alloys, metallurgy, and bonding in growth markets. As an example, one paper worthy of note is “Alcoa 951:Bonding to the Automotive Future,” by James Marinelli, Alcoa. This paper discusses the efficient and effective bonding of aluminum extrusions to greatly enhance the opportunities to use extrusions in the growing automotive market.

Educational Workshops

A number of educational workshops and courses from aluminum industry organizations will provide comprehensive and convenient learning opportunities at ET ’16. Delegates interested in attending a workshop should register early, as space is limited. (Note: ET ’16 reserves the right to alter the program and schedule as needed.)

Process Analysis and Optimization – Monday, May 2, 2016: Learn how to optimize and analyze the extrusion process in this one-day workshop from Lorenzo Donati, Luca Tomesani, and Barbara Reggiani, experts from Manufacturing Technologies Group at the University of Bologna in Italy. They have worked extensively with European extruders and die makers in order to optimize die design, improve welding phenomena in extrusion dies, increase die life and analyze final microstructure of extruded profiles. This course covers the following topics:

  • Introduction to Practical and Analytical Extrusion Concepts
  • Material Flow and Friction in Direct Extrusion
  • Die Failure Modes and Die Life Prediction
  • Charge Welds and Process Performance
  • Seam Welds, Welding Criteria, and Profile Strength
  • Microstructure Evolution and Streak Formation Mechanisms

Preview of AEC Academy – Monday, May 2, 2016: It is AEC’s mission, in part, to “enhance the ability of its members to meet the emerging demands of the market through sharing knowledge and best practices.” The council helps extruders benchmark, improve, and optimize operations through its educational program, AEC Academy. This assortment of technical sessions taken from some of the Council’s most popular workshops and clinics provides a glimpse into AEC’s excellent technical education program. Included are sessions from the Process Optimization Workshop, Die Clinic, Press Maintenance Workshop and Finishing Workshop. If you’ve never attended an AEC technical workshop this is your chance to see what you’ve been missing and take home valuable information to share with your team. Sessions include: a handling equipment panel discussion, a die and tooling update, a look at failures of extrusion press components and their prevention, and a finishing overview. (Open to AEC members only.)

AEC Extrusion Excellence Course – Tuesday, May 3, 2016: Connect theory and practice in this one-day intensive course that offers a fundamental engineering approach to the aluminum extrusion process at the AEC’s Extrusion Excellence Short Course. Taught by renowned industry expert, Dr. Wojciech Misiolek of the Institute of Metal Forming at Lehigh University, this one-day intensive course covers: Extrusion Concepts, Aluminum Extrusion Alloys, Aluminum Billet Metallurgy, Extrudability, Metal Flow Analysis, Extrusion Dies, Quality Assurance, and Current Technological Developments. Registration is limited to 30 attendees. (Open to AEC members only.)

AAC Anodizing Essential s Workshop – Tuesday, May 3, 2016: Learn essential techniques for producing a quality anodized product at the Aluminum Anodizers Council’s Level 1 School for Anodizers Course, Anodizing Essentials. This all-day workshop details the foundation of quality anodizing, taking attendees through the entire process—beginning with the metallurgical properties of aluminum alloys commonly anodized and through to the final rinse and sealing processes. The program is designed to benefit production personnel at every level, from the line operator to the production manager, particularly if they are relatively new to the business. Workshop topics include:

  • Anodizing in a Nutshell
  • Metallurgy Basics for Aluminum Surfaces
  • Safety/Waste Treatment
  • Racking for Successful Anodizing
  • Cleaning/Rinsing
  • Etch & Bright Dip
  • Power Supplies, Rectifiers, and Transformers
  • Anodizing Basics for Aluminum Surfaces
  • Dyeing and Sealing

For more information on the event, workshops, and a complete list of abstracts when they are made available, visit:

Photo: Wikimedia – Creative Commons

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