All articles by ams_ruarimccallion

  • the-gears-that-edrive-systems-need-to-turn-a-emotors-high-speed-into-high-torque

    Transfer of power


    GKN is supporting the growth in electric and hybrid vehicle production with the development of its eDrive powertrainsThe company has spent the past 15 years acquiring the production experience needed to transfer the technology from niche vehicles to high-volume mass-market applications,” says Peter Moelgg, All-Wheel & E-Drive CEO at GKN ...

  • GardoFlex galvanising bath KMS

    Coping with coatings


    The latest solutions for steel include metal-cored welding wires, zinc-magnesium-aluminium alloys and a nanoceramic methodA car body goes through the GardoFlex galvanising bath at Kia Motors SlovakiaThe automotive industry has found steel such a useful material that it seems almost churlish to mention its habit of bonding with oxygen and ...

  • SSAB

    Absorbing competition


    Lightweighting is driving continuous improvement in all materials, but especially steelLighter weight equals less power equals lower carbon emissions. The equation is simple and the quest to find ever-lighter materials for use in automotive production is unending. Aluminium is a lot lighter, plastics are both lighter and easier to form ...

  • Pic 1

    Bright ideas for energy use


    Energy is arguably the largest controllable element in automotive manufacturing. AMS investigates how to get the biggest ‘bang’ for the smallest ‘buck’ Raw material costs fluctuate according to classic supply and demand, leaving aside the impact of leveraging by hedge funds. A car needs metal and is not easy to ...

  • nov-dec13-features-Ford-F-150.jpg

    Ford makes the most of recyclate


    With vehicle-makers taking a greater interest in using recycled materials, Ruari McCallion investigates the processes and challenges involvedFord Motor Company’s new F-150 trucks have been the target of some criticism for their size, weight and thirst, but according to the OEM the model will feature unprecedented levels of environmentally-friendly materials.Recycling ...

  • nov-dec13-features-Toyota-ME-WE-concept.jpg

    Plastic fantastic


    As the use of plastics in automotive manufacturing continues to expand, with many options available today.Linde Gases started to get into the automotive industry around 15 years ago as a natural consequence of its involvement with the foaming of plastics. The progress was evolutionary rather than revolutionary, taking the company ...

  • fan-1

    The light fantastic


    Aluminium is steadily gaining a larger share of the total material usage in automobile construction, but it can be challenging, especially in high volume production, writes Ruari McCallionAccording to a 2012 report from research group Ducker Worldwide, aluminium now averages 140kg per vehicle manufactured in the EU.Premiums driving increaseBetter by ...

  • high-2

    Potential for aluminium in high volume


    When, at a demonstration of the new Range Rover Sport, the presenter talked about it being in excess of 25% stiffer than its predecessor, the point was made by forcing the vehicle’s front right wheel off the ground, tilting the whole thing across its diagonal axis and banging it back ...

  • law-1.jpg

    The law is an asset


    The legal framework for control of waste, emissions and the handling of hazardous substances is not just a burden – it also sets a much-desired, international, ‘level playing field’.Environmental legislation has real teeth. Executives of companies that pollute the land, air and (especially) water supply can find themselves in serious ...

  • legacy-1.jpg

    A cleaner legacy


    The repercussions of toxic chemical and metal use keep coming, but this legacy is being dealt with and can be prevented reports Ruari McCallionThe automotive industry has been heavily involved in reducing pollution as legislation, consumer movements and competitive pressures have led to massive reductions in the amount of toxicity ...

  • fordfumes



    Different thinkingVOC captureGovernment supportFord’s Fumes-to-Fuel project has been developing systems to use VOCs to power fuel cells for nearly a decade. Its next installation will produce 300kW of power per hour, the company saysWhile their long-term effects are not completely understood, Volatile Organic Chemicals (VOCs) are believed to be among ...

  • solarpanels1

    The vital sunshine sparks


    English ambitionPlanting sustainabilityRenault’s six-packSunny site upThe race to lead globallyFerrari’s red automotive masterpieces are produced at a plant that can claim to be among the leaders in green technology. Its Maranello factory is one of a growing number of auto manufacturing facilities that make use of solar photovoltaic (pv) power. ...

  • windpower1

    Wind of change blows in some surprising places


    Foolish or far-sightedThe blades start turningVW dives inSuccess in SunderlandThe most visible form alternative energy generation is the wind turbine. It has been accepted across the world, although not without opposition – especially from those whose views would be spoiled by the planting of wind farms. But the questions on ...

  • lighter

    A lighter touch with aluminium


    Joined-up thinkingCommitment to the right mixGoing all the wayPainting problemsThe mark of classLightweighting is a key factor in modern vehicle construction. The latest mainstream model to get the all-aluminium treatment is the new Range Rover, from Jaguar Land Rover. The third generation of the iconic SUV is bigger and has ...

  • Article

    Holding tight when the material gets harder


    Failure issuesMaterial compatibilityHigher costsSome fastener manufacturers have indicated that the materials some body engineers describe as ‘hard’, they would call quite soft. The steels used are significantly stronger than mild or cold-rolled steel; the aim of using stronger steel is to make fastener products that are thinner and lighter, but ...

  • engine

    Lightweight powertrains


    Strength and resilienceMaterial substitutionBodywork and chassis are not the only parts of the car that make use of aluminium. The powertrain has been revolutionised over the past 10 years or so. Before then, engine blocks and gearbox casings were either steel or iron. Not so any more. “We wouldn’t think ...

  • Article

    Hard truths for B-pillars


    Performance variablesTopology optimisation The composite component……sees dreams turn to dustComposites are being promoted as the ultimate impact-resistant material, but Altair and VW found that aluminium was the better solution for B-pillars. Part of Bentley’s parent company, Volkswagen Group Research, recently undertook a project intended to study the viability of composites ...

  • Article

    UHSS brings electric light


    Crash courseBattery changeMore steel = less weightUHSS offers the scope to save weight on electric vehicles. A report on ArcelorMittal’s updated S-in motion project with an electric car BIW exercise.Electric vehicles (EV) present automotive designers with a whole new set of challenges. The powertrain – including the batteries – is ...

  • mazda-cx5

    Manufacturing with UHSS


    Definition and familiesProduction methodsUsage – where and when?Joining and fasteningHigher strengthCorrosive influenceElectric lightThe pressure on reduce weight, while maintaining strength and improving safety, continues to drive the development and usage of advanced materials. Along with engineering plastics, engineered metals are enjoying a raised profile and being employed in more areas ...

  • santonio

    The speed of light has brought carbon a long way


    Slashing cycle timesAutomatic for the peopleBeyond supercarsCarbon fibre has come a long way in the 30 years since it was first used for a car’s chassis, but cost and production time have restricted more widesepread production. However, both of those issues are being overcome.When John Barnard and Ron Dennis of ...