International Aluminium Die-casting Award 2018:

The winners of the 8th International Aluminium Die-casting Award 2018 were announced. Six cast pieces in total received prizes and "Special Commendations".

Die casting competition 2018 shows future-oriented solutions

1st-3rd prizes of the 18th Internationalen Aluminium Die-casting Award 2018 (from l. to r.)

Nuremberg, 16 January 2018 – GDA - Gesamtverband der Aluminiumindustrie e.V. (German aluminium association), Düsseldorf, has awarded the winners of the International Aluminium Die Casting Competition 2018 as part of the EUROGUSS 2018 in Nuremberg. Prizes were awarded by a jury of experts from research and practice to three castings from renowned manufacturers with a further three castings receiving special commendations. The 8th International Aluminum Die Casting Competition is organized by the GDA. It was partnered by the Association of the German Foundry Industry (BDG). The Austrian Non-Ferrous Metals Federation of the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber and the Swiss Aluminium Association “” also supported the competition.

For many years, the Aluminium Die-casting Award has proven to be a successful platform for demonstrating the high quality standards of aluminium die-castings. The aim of the competition is to boost interest in aluminium, a versatile material, still further and to demonstrate further fields of application. Criteria for evaluating the castings, submitted to the Aluminum Die Casting Competition 2018, were the die-cast conform and resource efficient construction.

A jury of experts from research and practice awarded six submissions: three cast pieces received prizes, three more "Special Commendations". The official award ceremony takes place on the EUROGUSS 2018 on January 17, 2018 from 11:30 am until 12:00 o'clock and will be broadcasted live on our Facebook page.

The winners were:

1st Prize: Connection part CD

DGS Druckguss Systeme AG, St. Gallen
Alloy: AISi10MnMgZnZr
Weight: 3 043 g
Dimensions: L: 797 mm x, W: 437 mm x, H: 304 mm

The first prize is being awarded for the holistic approach adopted in obtaining a highly competitive cast structural component. It is a part that has established itself thanks to a weight saving of 19% compared with a sheet-metal shell construction, the result of the part’s complex, load-path-optimised wall-thickness distribution and rib configuration. The need for higher specific strength was achieved by choosing a high-strength alloy with very good flow characteristics combined with a T6 temper. Very efficient temperature control together with a runner that is ideal from a flow technology point of view enables component wall thicknesses of 1.8-2 mm to be achieved.

2nd Prize: Housing for high-voltage batteries, upper and lower part

Magna BDW technologies GmbH, Markt Schwaben
Alloy: EN AC-AISi10MnMg(Fe) - T7
Weight upper part: 7 270 g
Weight lower part: 14 120 g
Dimensions: L: 1120 mm x, W: 540 mm x, H: 260 mm

The second prize will be awarded to a housing for high-voltage batteries for a plug-in hybrid vehicle that needs to satisfy the highest possible crash requirements. The geometry is achieved by using a very slider-intensive tooling concept and keeping the sealing surfaces free from ejectors. Particular mention should be given to the long flow length and the T7 heat treatment which results in relatively low distortion for a component of this size. An added benefit is that the part can be used without machining.

3rd Prize: Tank housing

Georg Fischer Druckguss GmbH, Herzogenburg
Alloy: EN AC-AISi10MnMg-T7
Weight: 10 900 g
Dimensions: L: 980 mm x, W: 626 mm x, H: 236 mm

The third prize goes to a crash-relevant component that opens up a new area of applica-tion for die-castings in hybrid vehicles. Aluminium die-casting offers cost savings while reducing weight at the same time. The award-winning component incorporates an ex-tremely wide range of different functions and replaces a possible fabricated sheet struc-ture. The component is subjected to a T7 heat treatment to reduce the risk of distortion of the intricate parts. This entry also scored points for the high depth of value added right through to CIL coating in the foundry.


"Special Commendation":

The three cast pieces in the category "Special Commendations"

The following three cast pieces received "Special Commendations:

Special Commendation: Part of an oil-coolant module for medium and heavy duty commercial vehicles
Hengst SE & Co. KG, Nordwalde
Alloy: EN AC-AISi9Cu3(Fe)
Weight: 6 777 g
Dimensions: L: 250 mm x, W: 230 mm x, H: 360 mm

This entry was commended for the methodical approach adopted with respect to devel-opment, design, vertical range of manufacture and casting from a single source. The component has a high function density that can only be achieved by close cooperation between the development department and the foundry. The complex geometry and the demanding tolerances require special cooling measures, and these were achieved using additive-manufactured tool inserts (see photo left).

Special Commendation: Gearbox housing
Albert Handtmann Metallgusswerk GmbH & Co. KG, Biberach/Riss
Alloy: EN AC-AISi9Cu3
Weight: 20 240 g
Dimensions: L: 517 mm x, W: 503 mm x, H: 388 mm

This casting is a modern gearbox housing with a high degree of functional integration for a hybrid vehicle. To meet the high demands placed on cast-component quality locally, the company had to pull out all the stops where tool design was concerned: jet cooling, slider-in-slider, coated wear inserts, gating by means of a slider, the use of squeezers and vacuum-assisted venting of the cavity (see photo middle).

Special Commendation: Compact pump unit
Druckguss Westfalen GmbH & Co. KG., Geseke
Alloy: EN AC-AlSi10MnMg
Weight: 3 365 g
Dimensions: L: 259 mm x, W: 178 mm x, H: 172 mm

A special commendation will also be awarded for the methodical further development of a die-casting mould for a compact pump unit that is used in mechanical engineering. The existing tooling presented a particular challenge for the filling and venting of the hub area. It was possible to optimise the component geometry, tooling concept and casting parameters by methodical and uncompromising use of simulation tooling. Ultimately, the required cast-component quality was achieved using this meticulous approach (see photo right).

The prize-winning castings will be on display in Hall 6 at the EUROGUSS fair (BDG stand 6-430) and one can also see them this year at the ALUMINIUM trade fair in Düsseldorf (09 – 11 October 2018).