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First Annual Forging Lightweight Alloys Conference a Success

Forging Conference

The Forging Industry Association (FIA) held its first annual Forging Lightweight Alloys Conference & Plant Tour on February 14-16, in Pinehurst, North Carolina. The multi-faceted three-day event started with an “Aluminum and Titanium Metallurgy & Forging 101 Workshop,” led by Prof. Blair London, Materials Engineering Dept., Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, which was focused on metallurgical technology and applications for aluminum and titanium alloys relevant to the forging industry.

Jim Warren, FIA president & CEO, welcomes a sold-out crowd to the event.

Over the next few days there were a slew of presentations covering many topics, including: forging different lightweight materials, OEM needs, advancements in forging technology, equipment for lightweight forging, post-forging processes, and more. On the second day of the conference, attendees were transported to the new Bharat Forge Aluminum USA, Inc. forging plant in Sanford, North Carolina, to get a sneak peak at the company’s ultramodern and highly automated aluminum forging processes. Finally, an optional golf-outing took place on the last day of the event in which golfers were able to try their luck on the legendary Pinehurst No.2 Golf Course.

The technical program occurred within the same ballroom where tabletop exhibitors were also organized, so that attendees could easily network with exhibitors and exhibitors could also attend the presentations, which included:

  • Keynote: Market Outlook: Lightweight Forging in Aerospace, Glenn McDonald, Aerodynamic Advisory
  • Material Considerations in Forging Titanium, John Mantione, ATI Specialty Materials  
  • Investing in Aluminum: Ellwood’s New Aluminum Cast House, Brad Craven, Ellwood Specialty Steel Group
  • Controlling Residual Stress in Aluminum Forgings, Mark Timko, Weber Metals
  • Aluminum Heat Treating, Bill Baxter and Bryan Gerber, Premier Thermal
  • Case Study: Pre-Form Design for Flash-less Aluminum Die Forging, Gracious Ngaile, NCSU
  • Search for Titanium Containing High Entropy Alloys for Possible Substitution of Legacy Alloys in Aeroengine Applications, Ramachandra Canumalla, Weldaloy Specialty Forgings, and Tanjore V. Jayaraman, University of Michigan
  • The Case for Forging Magnesium Materials, Steven Barela, Terves LLC    
  • Survey of Markets for Aluminum Cardinal Ballroom, John Weritz, The Aluminum Association
  • Best Practices for Forging Aluminum & Titanium Alloys, Ian Mitchell, Modern Forge
  • Closed Die Hot Forming of Aluminum Components, Danilo Milini and Umberto Afeltra, Hydromec srl
  • Toward Zero Residual Stress Post-Quench, Ian Mitchell, Modern Forge
  • Applications of Process Simulation in Forged Wheel Production, James Miller, Scientific Forming Technologies Corp.
  • Aluminum Heat Treatment Processes Simulation, Sergio Rodriguez, Transvalor Americas Corp.
  • Aluminum Forged Parts: Multiple Step Forging Process, Lyès Hacin, ing, Ph.D, MBA, Centre of Expertise and Innovation on Aluminum of AluQuebec
  • Production Part Tracing Along the Forging Process Train, Martin G. Scholles, SMS Group GmbH

Lightweight Forging

The FIA Board approved the formation of the Lightweight Alloys Committee (LAC) in mid-2019 to put more focus on non-ferrous materials. Forgers of lightweight alloys have always been a significant portion of the association’s membership, but they did not have their own committee or event. Just a few short years later the first Forging Lightweight Alloys Conference went off without a hitch.

“Attendee feedback was outstanding for this first conference,” said said Jim Warren, president & CEO of the FIA. “The combination of an excellent technical program, state-of-the-art plant tour, and world-class golf proved to be a winning combination for conference attendees. The program was sold out with 125 registered attendees.”

(L-R): Rose Eaton, Light Metal Age; Ashleigh Walters, Onex Inc.; Jim Kravec and Doug McIntyre, Weber Metals;
Ray Nejadfard, Cuyahoga Community College. ©Forging Industry Association

Due to the success of this cardinal event, the Forging Lightweight Alloys Conference & Plant Tour will officially be an annual event for the forging industry from now forward. “Many industries are looking at ways of lightweighting their products, including the aerospace, automotive, and military industries. As industry moves to reduce its carbon footprint, it makes sense to see how forged lightweight alloys might be part of the solution,” said Warren.

FIA committees’ responsibilities involve assisting staff in creating programming, technical articles, and serving as liaisons to universities and community colleges, as well as keeping the FIA board of directors updated with the latest happenings in their respective industry segments.

The FIA is looking for additional members in the lightweight alloys category and welcomes interested parties to get in touch with Jim Warren, president & CEO, FIA.  Companies must be a member of the association to participate on the Lightweight Alloys Committee and/or any other committees within FIA. For inquiries:

Forging Conference
Phil Wallace, Bharat Forge Aluminum, taking a swing at Pinehurst No.2.

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