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Novelis Global Technology Centre

Country: Canada

Novelis Global Technology Centre

7 Projects, page 1 of 2
  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: EP/G022674/1
    Funder Contribution: 183,316 GBP

    There are clear drivers in the transport industry towards lower fuel consumption and CO2 emissions through the introduction of designs involving combinations of different material classes, such as steel, titanium, magnesium and aluminium alloys, metal sheet and castings, and laminates in more efficient hybrid structures. The future direction of the transport industry will thus undoubtedly be based on multi-material solutions. This shift in design philosophy is already past the embryonic stage, with the introduction of aluminium front end steel body shells (BMW 5 series) and the integration of aluminium sheet and magnesium high pressure die castings in aluminium car bodies (e.g. Jaguar XK).Such material combinations are currently joined by fasteners, which are expensive and inefficient, as they are very difficult to weld by conventional technologies like electrical resistance spot, MIG arc, and laser welding. New advanced solid state friction based welding techniques can potentially overcome many of the issues associated with joining dissimilar material combinations, as they lower the overall heat input and do not melt the materials. This greatly reduces the tendency for poor bond strengths, due to interfacial reaction and solidification cracking, as well as damage to thermally sensitive materials like laminates and aluminium alloys used in automotive bodies, which are designed to harden during paint baking. Friction joining techniques are also far more efficient, resulting in energy savings of > 90% relative to resistance spot and laser welding, are more robust processes, and can be readily used in combination with adhesive bonding.This project, in close collaboration with industry (e.g. Jaguar - Land Rover, Airbus, Corus, Meridian, Novelis, TWI, Sonobond) will investigate materials and process issues associated with optimising friction joining of hybrid, more mass efficient structures, focusing on; Friction Stir, Friction Stir Spot, and High Power Ultrasonic Spot welding. The work will be underpinned by novel approaches to developing models of these exciting new processes and detailed analysis and modelling of key material interactions, such as interfacial bonding / reaction and weld microstructure formation.

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  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: EP/G022402/1
    Funder Contribution: 406,440 GBP

    There are clear drivers in the transport industry towards lower fuel consumption and CO2 emissions through the introduction of designs involving combinations of different material classes, such as steel, titanium, magnesium and aluminium alloys, metal sheet and castings, and laminates in more efficient hybrid structures. The future direction of the transport industry will thus undoubtedly be based on multi-material solutions. This shift in design philosophy is already past the embryonic stage, with the introduction of aluminium front end steel body shells (BMW 5 series) and the integration of aluminium sheet and magnesium high pressure die castings in aluminium car bodies (e.g. Jaguar XK).Such material combinations are currently joined by fasteners, which are expensive and inefficient, as they are very difficult to weld by conventional technologies like electrical resistance spot, MIG arc, and laser welding. New advanced solid state friction based welding techniques can potentially overcome many of the issues associated with joining dissimilar material combinations, as they lower the overall heat input and do not melt the materials. This greatly reduces the tendency for poor bond strengths, due to interfacial reaction and solidification cracking, as well as damage to thermally sensitive materials like laminates and aluminium alloys used in automotive bodies, which are designed to harden during paint baking. Friction joining techniques are also far more efficient, resulting in energy savings of > 90% relative to resistance spot and laser welding, are more robust processes, and can be readily used in combination with adhesive bonding.This project, in close collaboration with industry (e.g. Jaguar - Land Rover, Airbus, Corus, Meridian, Novelis, TWI, Sonobond) will investigate materials and process issues associated with optimising friction joining of hybrid, more mass efficient structures, focusing on; Friction Stir, Friction Stir Spot, and High Power Ultrasonic Spot welding. The work will be underpinned by novel approaches to developing models of these exciting new processes and detailed analysis and modelling of key material interactions, such as interfacial bonding / reaction and weld microstructure formation.

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  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: EP/I015507/1
    Funder Contribution: 1,248,000 GBP

    Underinvestment in Manufacturing in the UK over the past decade has left this vital pillar of the economy exposed. OECD statistics show this starkly when comparing the UK to competitors whose sectors have grown since the start of the new millennium - the UK has- The largest proportion of low technology companies - The lowest proportion of employees in manufacturing- The lowest R & D spend as a function of GDP- The highest wage costs when compared to productivity.The recent economic crisis has highlighted the UK's over dependence on the financial services sector. Countries such as France and Germany with larger and growing manufacturing bases both emerged from the global recession more rapidly than the UK. This gap in support for the manufacturing sector has been recognised by EPSRC who made provisions to stimulate new IMRCs and doctorate training centres which can support UK manufacturing through close collaboration with the science base at universities.MATTER is a new initiative at Swansea specifically targeted at high technology advanced manufacturing and exploits the considerable experience of running industry facing doctorate centres at Swansea University. MATTER will be run in the multidisciplinary research environment provided in the School of Engineering at Swansea spanning all three research centres - computational, materials and nanotechnology. It will be led by a team of highly experienced researchers representing a wide range of expertise across the centres. Swansea has been a pioneer of the EngD concept since its inception in 1992. The award winning research and training partnerships continue with two highly focused doctoral training partnerships for the steel industry in Wales and for structural metallic systems for gas turbines. Swansea is also the lead organisation on the ERDF funded project ASTUTE to support Advanced Sustainable Manufacturing Technologies in Wales with postdoctoral research and extensive knowledge transfer activities from academia to industry. Manufacturing also strongly features in the HEFCW funded project to establish ArROW, an Aerospace Research Organisation Wales, which is led by Swansea University. The latter is to build research capacity, but it lacks funds for the critical element of doctoral students to more extensively engage with industry.In analysing technical roadmapping documents from the packaging and the aerospace industries, and the portfolio of support offered to manufacturing industries, Swansea University has identified key gaps and opportunities to work with the supply chains in Packaging, Automotive and Aerospace specifically outside of the EU convergence areas covered by existing funding. Within these technology clusters are key cross cutting themes, lean principles, sustainability, and value added. The gap in support will be filled through the generation of an advanced manufacturing centre that will train a minimum of 26 engineering doctorate research engineers, adding value to the training schemes already in place to service the Welsh convergence regions. MATTER will concentrate on increasing the intellectual value of the products and processes in order to add value through innovation, decreasing the commodity element of much of the UK sector. A key area of focus for MATTER will be improving processes to minimise waste and to improve quality.The existing infrastructure at Swansea University will underpin MATTER maximising the number of students that can be trained. Swansea will contribute 56% of the fees along with the provision of training costs and administration support from within their extensive infrastructure build up around several large scale projects, such as STRIP, ASTUTE and ArROW. Industry will also make a considerable additional contribution both in terms of in kind support and cash. The combined contribution from industry and Swansea University to MATTER will provide approximately 2 for every 1 requested from EPSRC.

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  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: EP/G036950/1
    Funder Contribution: 6,371,160 GBP

    This is an application for a Doctoral Training Centre (DTC) from the Universities of Sheffield and Manchester in Advanced Metallic Systems which will be directed by Prof Panos Tsakiropoulos and Prof Phil Prangnell. The proposed DTC is in response to recent reviews by the EPSRC and government/industrial bodies which have indentified the serious impact of an increasing shortage of personnel, with Doctorate level training in metallic materials, on the global competitiveness of the UK's manufacturing and defence capability. Furthermore, future applications of materials are increasingly being seen as systems that incorporate several material classes and engineered surfaces into single components, to increase performance.The primary goal of the DTC is to address these issues head on by supplying the next generation of metallics research specialists desperately needed by UK plc. We plan to attract talented students from a diverse range of physical science and engineering backgrounds and involve them with highly motivated academic staff in a variety of innovative teaching and industrial-based research activities. The programme aims to prepare graduates for global challenges in competitiveness, through an enhanced PhD programme that will:1. Challenge students and promote independent problem solving and interdiscpilnarity,2. Expose them to industrial innovation, exciting new science and the international research community, 3. Increase their fundamental skills, and broaden them as individuals in preparation for future management and leadership roles.The DTC will be aligned with major multidisciplinary research centres and with the strong involvement of NAMTEC (the National Metals Technology Centre) and over twenty companies across many sectors. Learning will be up to date and industrially relevant, as well as benefitting from access to 30M of state-of-the art research facilities.Research projects will be targeted at high value UK strategic technology sectors, such as aerospace, automotive, power generation, renewables, and defence and aim to:1. Provide a multidisciplinary approach to the whole product life cycle; from raw material, to semi finished products to forming, joining, surface engineering/coating, in service performance and recycling via the wide skill base of the combined academic team and industrial collaborators.2. Improve the basic understanding of how nano-, micro- and meso-scale physical processes control material microstructures and thereby properties, in order to radically improve industrial processes, and advance techniques of modelling and process simulation.3. Develop new innovative processes and processing routes, i.e. disruptive or transformative technologies.4. Address challenges in energy by the development of advanced metallic solutions and manufacturing technologies for nuclear power, reduced CO2 emissions, and renewable energy. 5. Study issues and develop techniques for interfacing metallic materials into advanced hybrid structures with polymers, laminates, foams and composites etc. 6. Develop novel coatings and surface treatments to protect new light alloys and hybrid structures, in hostile environments, reduce environmental impact of chemical treatments and add value and increase functionality. 7. Reduce environmental impact through reductions in process energy costs and concurrently develop new materials that address the environmental challenges in weight saving and recyclability technologies. This we believe will produce PhD graduates with a superior skills base enabling problem solving and leadership expertise well beyond a conventional PhD project, i.e. a DTC with a structured programme and stimulating methods of engagement, will produce internationally competitive doctoral graduates that can engage with today's diverse metallurgical issues and contribute to the development of a high level knowledge-based UK manufacturing sector.

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  • Funder: UKRI Project Code: EP/H020047/1
    Funder Contribution: 5,762,120 GBP

    To avoid global warming and our unsustainable dependence on fossil fuels, the UK's CO2 emissions are recommended to be reduced by 80% from current levels by 2050. Aerospace and automotive manufacturing are critical to the UK economy, with a turnover of 30 billion and employing some 600,000 worker. Applications for light alloys within the transport sector are projected to double in the next decade. However, the properties and cost of current light alloy materials, and the associated manufacturing processes, are already inhibiting progress. Polymer composites are too expensive for body structures in large volume vehicle production and difficult to recycle. First generation, with a high level of recycling, full light alloy aluminium and magnesium vehicles in production are cheaper and give similar weight savings (~ 40%) and life cycle CO2 footprint to low cost composites. Computer-based design tools are also playing an increasing role in industry and allow, as never before, the optimisation of complex component architectures for increased mass efficiency. High performance alloys are still dominant in aeroengine applications and will provide ~ 30% of the structural components of future aircraft designs, where they will have to be increasingly produced in more intricate component shapes and interfaced with composite materials.To achieve further weight reductions, a second generation of higher performance light alloy design solutions are thus required that perform reliably in service, are recyclable, and have more complex product forms - produced with lower cost, energy efficient, manufacturing processes. With design optimisation, and by combining the best attributes of advanced high strength Al and Mg alloys with composites, laminates, and cheaper steel products, it will be possible to produce step change in performance with cost-effective, highly mass efficient, multi-material structures.This roadmap presents many challenges to the materials community, with research urgently required address the science necessary to solve the following critical issues: How do we make more complex shapes in higher performance lower formability materials, while achieving the required internal microstructure, texture, surface finish and, hence, service and cosmetic properties, and with lower energy requirements? How do we join different materials, such as aluminium and magnesium, with composites, laminates, and steel to produce hybrid materials and more mass efficient cost-effective designs? How do we protect such multi-material structures, and their interfaces against corrosion and environmental degradation?Examples of the many scientific challenges that require immediate attention include, how can we: (i) capture the influence of a materials deformation mechanisms, microstructure and texture on formability, thus allowing computer models to be used to rapidly optimise forming for difficult alloys in terms of component shape and energy requirements; (ii) predict and control detrimental interfacial reactions in dissimilar joints; (iii) take advantage of innovative ideas, like using lasers to 'draw on' more formable microstructures in panels, where it is needed; (v) use smart self healing coating technologies to protect new alloys and dissimilar joints in service, (vi) mitigate against the impact of contamination from recycling on growth of oxide barrier coating, etc.A high priority for the Programme is to help fill the skills gap in metallurgical and corrosion science, highlighted in the EPSRC Review of Materials Research (IMR2008), by training the globally competitive, multidisciplinary, and innovative materials engineers needed by UK manufacturing. The impact of the project will be enhanced by a professionally managed, strategic, research Programme and through promoting a high international profile of the research output, as well as by performing an advocacy role for materials engineering to the general public.

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