Magnesium Advances and Applications in North America Automotive Industry
Magnesium is increasingly becoming an attractive alternative to steel, aluminum, and polymer composites for vehicle weight reduction due to its ability to meet vehicle performance requirements. To meet the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFÉ) standard and to maximize the weight reduction of vehicles in the coming years, the magnesium applications are expected to increase significantly in both structural and powertrain components where material creep resistance is required. This first half of the paper will give an overview of recent automotive magnesium R&D programs including Light Metal Cast, Magnesium Powertrain Cast Components, and Structural Cast Magnesium Development supported by the United States Council for Automotive Research (USCAR) and the US Department of Energy. The USCAR is the umbrella organization of DaimlerChrysler Corporation, Ford Motor Company and General Motors, which was formed in 1992 to further strengthen the technology base of the US automotive industry through cooperative, pre-competitive research. During the last decade, the magnesium foundry industry has grown, yet the material and manufacturing process costs of magnesium die-casting has impeded large-scale implementation into the automotive industry. As a result, Ford Motor Company initiated a Cost Reduced Magnesium Die Castings Using Heated Runners (CORMAG) program in partnership of the Advanced Technology Program of the US National Institute of Standards and Technology. The second half of this paper will briefly present the program goal, progress and its impact. In addition, this paper will present some magnesium applications, including a 2004 Ford F-150 light truck Front End Support Assembly and a 2005 Ford GT instrument panel structure.
W.Ke, E.H.Han, Y.F.Han, K.Kainer and A.A.Luo
N. Y. Li "Magnesium Advances and Applications in North America Automotive Industry", Materials Science Forum, Vols. 488-489, pp. 931-0, 2005