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Ideas Taking Shape – Entries Sought for 2014 Aluminum Extrusion Design Competition

Sapa_profile_designThe Aluminum Extruders Council and the ET Foundation are seeking entries for the 2014 International Aluminum Extrusion Design Competition. The competition is divided into two classes: Professional and Student.  Cash prizes and student scholarships are expected to total $20,000 — including a Grand Prize of $3,500. Cash prizes and student scholarships are sponsored by Sapa Extrusions North America.

There is no fee to enter the competition. Professional designers, engineers, and manufacturers along with students studying design, engineering and related fields at universities, colleges, technical schools and high schools around the world are invited to participate. Aluminum extruders are encouraged to team up with their customers to submit a design for the competition. Winners of the 2014 Design Competition will be announced following the entry deadline and the winning designs will be posted on the ET Foundation website and promoted in the media.

Submissions will be accepted through March 31, 2014. Entry forms can be downloaded at

Professional Cash Prizes and Student Scholarships

Winning entries will be determined by those designs that best demonstrate the benefits of aluminum extrusions and meet the four basic criteria of creativity, practicality, product/process advantage and market/impact potential.

In addition to a Grand Prize of $3,500 to be awarded across all categories and classes, professionals and students will compete within their own classes for the awards totaling $20,000.

Entries received in the Professional Class will be divided into four categories: Structural, Transportation, Engineered Products, and Alternative Energy. First-place cash prizes in the amount of $2,000 will be awarded to the best design in each category.

Scholarships totaling $8,500 will be presented as cash awards to the top designs in the Student Class, including $3,000 for First Place, $2,000 for Second Place, $1,000 for Third Place, and $2,500 for the Sapa Sustainable Design Award. The Sapa Sustainable Design Award will be presented to the student whose design best addresses societal and/or environmental concerns, in addition to meeting the basic criteria (examples would be a device that helps improve conditions for refugees or an item that facilitates daily living for the handicapped or elderly). In addition, as part of their sponsorship of the competition, Sapa will be offering winning students complimentary attendance to a Sapa Profile Academy aluminum education event in 2014.

Beyond the Competition, Into the Classroom

Innovation is a key objective of the competition, which encourages students to develop new and expanded uses for extruded aluminum. Instructors at universities, colleges, technical and trade schools are also encouraged to incorporate the competition into their curriculum as a way to develop further adoption of aluminum extrusions. The Aluminum Extruders Council’s Academic Outreach Team has been fostering relationships with universities and technical schools across the U.S. and Canada as a way to get information about aluminum extrusions into the classroom.

“In order for our industry to make an impact, more has to be done to raise awareness of aluminum extrusions through academic outreach to engineering and design programs at universities and technical schools,” said AEC Academic Outreach Team Leader Jared Bringhurst, Operations Director at Futura Industries. “Students get extensive exposure in the classroom to steel but virtually nothing is covered on aluminum, and especially extrusion.”

As a teaching tool, AEC has developed the presentation, “Designing to the Limits of Your Imagination,” which covers the advantages of aluminum extrusions, including material and process benefits, practical applications, design tips and more. The presentation (a PowerPoint® slide file or PDF file) can be downloaded for free from the Student page of the ET Foundation website at

To view this news release in its entirety, click here.

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