Eck Installs New Nobake Line; Exclusively Licenses Alloy Developed With ORNL

July 12, 2017

Eck Industries (Manitowoc, Wisconsin) announced the installation of a nobake molding line from Palmer Manufacturing & Supply to create additional capacity, improve ergonomics and reduce cost in large aluminum nobake castings.

The molding line includes state-of-the-art programmable logic controls, powered conveyors from molding to pouring, a mass flow binder control system and a rollover capable of handling up to a 72 x 48 x 36 in. mold section. The mold line is flexible, allowing Eck to run up to eight mold boxes in the loop, with multiple part molds, mold coating and multiple core sets.

Eck Licenses Alloy Developed With ORNL
Eck has also signed an exclusive license for the commercialization of a cerium-aluminum (Ce-Al) alloy co-developed by the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (Oak Ridge, Tennessee) that can be used for lightweight, strong components in advanced vehicles and airplanes.

The alloy, which is patent pending, was developed as part of the Department of Energy’s Critical Materials Institute (CMI) and makes use of cerium. Creating new uses for cerium supports both domestic rare earth mining operations and the U.S. manufacturing sector.

Scientists at ORNL, working with Eck Industries and researchers at DOE’s Ames and Lawrence Livermore national laboratories, developed the Ce-Al alloy that is easy to work with, lightweight, corrosion-resistant, and stable at high temperatures, which would make it ideal for automotive, aerospace, power generation, and other applications.

According to a news release, testing has shown the Ce-Al alloy is stable at 932F (500C). Withstanding higher temperatures means that engines made using the alloy can run hotter with more complete fuel combustion while being lighter in weight, which advances fuel efficiency.

Eck was involved in developing and testing of the alloy under a separate agreement.

“There has been tremendous interest from industry due to the unique material properties and low cost of this alloy,” said David Weiss, vice president of Engineering/R&D, Eck. “This project is a template for rapid development and commercialization. Not only did we bridge the research ‘valley of death,’ we also developed a highway for communication from our customers to us to help guide the project.”

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