UK: Car output rise highest YTD, CVs slump
Data from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders shows that UK car output in October rose 17.4% year on year to 160,854 units, for the largest monthly increase so far this year. Automakers have built 1,286,287 cars year to date, a rise of 5.4%. Manufacturing for local sale was up 52.4% and exports rose 11.4%. Around 50% of UK car exports go to Europe - after months of decline, EU demand shows signs of improving, now recording two consecutive months of growth. In contrast, commercial vehicle production fell 33.8% to 7,825 units. Year to date output was down 19.9% to 75,484 units.
www.just-auto.com. 21 Nov. 2013.
November 2013 management briefing: turbochargers (1)
A new report from just-auto QUBE - Global light vehicle turbochargers market 2008 to 2028 - says that the key driver behind growing turbocharger use is the increasingly tough set of emissions rules which are deployed not just in developed markets but increasingly in developing markets too; turbochargers represent just one of the several technologies which the industry is using to reduce emissions. The fact that turbochargers have come to be recognised as a solution to reducing engine size and cutting emissions, while still allowing engine power to be retained, is a key factor behind their increased use. Reports on Ford's development of its EcoBoost engines.
www.just-auto.com. 20 Nov. 2013.
The Automotive Compressed Natural Gas Vehicles (NGV) Market 2013-2023 - Prospects for CNG Passenger Cars
Details a new report from Visiongain which says that the automotive compressed natural gas vehicles market is a dynamic and capital intensive industry. Gas systems fitted as original equipment follow the global demand for new vehicles and the cyclical nature of this business. In addition, demand for gas systems closely tracks the price of alternative fuels with the key driver for most purchases being the savings over petrol or diesel. Explains why there is considerable variation at country and regional level in the demand for natural gas vehicles. Covers the global market with detailed predictions of the countries which, through adjusting their energy policies for their national markets can have a major impact on global consumers.
The week that was: China rules
Details some recent developments in China's auto market. Says that new, China-only brands have been springing up in the country, now the world's largest vehicle market, with the latest being Denza, an electric vehicle marque from a joint venture between Daimler and EV specialist BYD - Shenzhen BYD Daimler New Technology (BDNT) - for which a small dealer network is being developed ahead of launch in Beijing in April 2014. Supporting that sort of development, suppliers continue to move in, setting up manufacturing plants and R&D centres. Bosal is one, with a new emissions controls factory specifically, as is increasingly common, for one automaker, Suzuki; and with plans for a research centre. Separately, safety systems specialist Takata has a new airbag plant in Hungary scheduled to open in October and employ 1,000.
www.just-auto.com. 22 Nov. 2013.
Germany: Volkswagen to plough EUR84.2bn into automotive division to 2018
More than two-thirds of VW's investment will be used to drive vehicle efficiency, drives and technologies, as well as environmentally-friendly production. Investments in property, plant and equipment in the automotive division will amount to Euros 63.4bn, while average annual investments in property, plant and equipment will be around Euros 0.5bn less than in the planning approved in 2012 for the period from 2013 to 2015. The lower level of investment in property, plant and equipment is due among other things to the postponement of construction projects and capacity optimisation. At Euros 41.2bn, or 65%, the Group will spend a large proportion of the total amount to be invested in property, plant and equipment in the automotive division on modernising and extending the product range for all its brands. The main focus will be on new vehicles and successor models in almost all vehicle classes, which will be based on modular tool-kit technology and related components.
www.just-auto.com, issue 701. 23 Nov. 2013.
France: Faurecia targets EUR21bn sales by 2016
Faurecia is to target more than Euros 21bn of sales and an operating margin of between 4.5% and 5% by 2016, depending on European production levels. The supplier is completing a period of transformation after integrating acquisitions such as Emcon Technologies, Plastal and Saline, while noting major growth in North America that has seen it become the 5th largest automotive supplier in the region as well as undergoing rapid expansion in Asia, particularly in China. Faurecia's future growth strategy is based on major trends, which it views as favourable to the group, such as acceleration in technology, in particular for vehicles with reduced fuel consumption and tighter emissions control, rapid growth of the automotive market in Asia and the dominance of global platforms. (Item contains no further information.)
www.just-auto.com. 25 Nov. 2013.
UK: Lotus gets GBP10m government grant to create 300 jobs
Lotus has said that it will use a £10M government grant from the Regional Growth Fund for new model research and development and staff training. It added that it expected to create 313 full time production related jobs but did not specify a timeframe other than 'coming years'. The Regional Growth Fund was set up to allocate £3.2bn to English businesses from 2011 to 2017. It aids projects which use private sector funds to create economic growth and sustainable employment.
www.just-auto.com. 26 Nov. 2013.
UK: Tata's Jaguar Land Rover builds a million at Halewood
Reports that Jaguar Land Rover has built its millionth vehicle at Halewood, north west England. The milestone Range Rover Evoque was donated to the charity Cancer Research UK. JLR took over Halewood in 2001 and the 1M vehicles built since include the Jaguar X-Type, Land Rover Freelander 2 and Range Rover Evoque. JLR said the 220,000 Evoques built in just two years was a record and saw the plant reach the 1M milestone ahead of forecast. Production volume has increased significantly over the past 12 months due to 24 hour working.
www.just-auto.com. 26 Nov. 2013.
Aluminium anodising: Lotus lightweight structure's anodising facility in Wellingborough
Reports on the company's anodising facility in Wellingborough which is the world's largest producer of structural chassis aluminium anodising. The plant can currently produce in excess of 0.5M square metres per annum and has processed over 10M automotive components. Details the history of the plant and describes the anodising process. Notes that every load is quality assured at several stages. This includes full traceability of the parts from material receipt to ship. Says that a key element in the operation of the plant is a bespoke data management system.
proActive, issue 50, Autumn 2013. pp.18-25. http://tinyurl.com/qg34tjj
Shaping the future of aluminium: solution heat treatment forming and in-die quenching (HFQ)
Reports that Lotus Engineering has been working closely with Imperial College London to develop an innovative aluminium forming process (solution heat treatment, forming and in-die quenching: HFQ) for the manufacture of lightweight, high strength aluminium pressings. Pressings with complex geometry have been successfully formed whilst retaining the full mechanical strength of the AA6082 T6 alloy tested. Lotus first recognised the potential of HFQ several years ago as a process which could enable a weight reduction for automotive aluminium chassis, body and closure structures, in addition to aerospace, rail and military applications. Details the benefits and potential applications of HFQ.
proActive, issue 50, Autumn 2013. pp.38-43. http://tinyurl.com/qg34tjj
Vision 2020: as EU targets for economy and emissions get ever closer
In the light of the regulatory pressures on the auto industry, reviews the range of activities aimed at reducing weight and improving fuel efficiency. Industry experts see electrification taking place, but still linked to an internal combustion engine. Other experts believe that aerodynamics can offer improvements in fuel efficiency. A further solution for delivering improved fuel economy could be clutch-by-wire, currently under development by Bosch.
proActive, issue 50, Autumn 2013. pp.52-57. http://tinyurl.com/qg34tjj
Stingray movement could inspire the next generation of submarines
Researchers at the University at Buffalo and Harvard University are studying how the movements of stingrays could be used to design more agile and fuel-efficient unmanned underwater vehicles. They used computational fluid dynamics, which employs algorithms to solve problems that involve fluid flows, to map the flow of water and the vortices around live stingrays. The vortices on the waves of the stingrays’ bodies cause favourable pressure fields - low pressure on the front and high pressure on the back - which push the ray forward. Because movement through air and water are similar, understanding vortices is critical. The study is believed to be the first time the leading-edge vortex, the vortex at the front of an object in motion, has been studied in underwater locomotion.
South Korean Navy picks GE gas turbines
Reports that GE Marine's LM500 aeroderivative gas turbine has been selected to power the Republic of Korea Navy's PKX-B. The value of the 34-ship programme is approximately $400M. It will be conducted in two phases: the first phase is for 16 shipsets and phase II will proceed according to ROK government procedures. The PKX-B patrol boats will use LM500 turbines, rated at approximately 6,017 shaft horsepower, in a combined diesel and gas turbine arrangement. The LM500 is derived from GE's TF34/CF34 turbofan aircraft engines.
Marine Engineers Review, Nov. 2013. p.6.
Rolls-Royce secures first new PROMAS litre contract
US ship company Glacier Fish has awarded Rolls-Royce its first contract to supply a new version of its Promas Lite propulsion system. The system will be used too improve propeller efficiency on the Guido Perla Associates designed factory trawler Alaska Ocean. Promas Lite is an integrated propeller and rudder system that increases efficiency and is designed specifically for retrofitting to existing ships and incorporates a new nozzle design for even greater efficiency gains. Typical savings from the system range from 5 to 15%, depending on the type of operation and the performance of the existing propeller.
Marine Engineers Review, Nov. 2013. p.7.
BV to class Chinese-built mega-containerships
Reports that Bureau Veritas is to class three Ultra-Large Container ships to be built for China State Shipbuilding Corporation and chartered to French operator CMA CGM. The three new 16,000 teu (twenty foot equivalent unit) ships are only a fraction smaller than the largest container ships being built in Korea and will be able to operate at a maximum speed of over 23kts with a single propeller directly coupled to a 69Mw, 2-stroke electronic engine. The design was developed by the Marine Design and Research Institute of China in co-operation with BV, which performed the drawing approval and conducted a thorough structural examination.
Marine Engineers Review, Nov. 2013. p.14.
UASC modern containerships to adhere to DNC class
Reports that United Arab Shipping Company has ordered five 14,000TEU vessels with one option. The new super-efficient container vessels will be constructed to DNV class, using designs optimised through a productive co-operation between FutureShip and Hyundai Heavy Industry. Four sets of designs were shortlisted for intensive evaluation by FutureShip with numerical tank towing tests based on Computational Fluid Dynamics simulations for the ship with propeller. HHI's design emerged as the winner due to a 14,000TEU vessel design that outperformed the competition and the most efficient (single-skeg) vessel design at 18,000TEU.
Marine Engineers Review, Nov. 2013. p.14.
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CSX to trial natural gas locomotive
GE Transportation is to work alongside CSX Corporation to undertake a pilot study into the use of Liquefied Natural Gas to power the operator’s fleet of Evolution Series locomotives. GE will retrofit CSX locomotives with its NextFuel Natural Gas kits which will allow the vehicles to run on both diesel and natural gas - a more efficient and more environmentally friendly alternative to traditional fuel sources. Retrofits will first be carried out on Evolution Series locomotives and, if successful, could be rolled out to other classes.
Russia to invest RUB 1.2 trillion on rail infrastructure between 2014-2016
Russian Railways is to invest 1.2 trillion rubles in improving its infrastructure and rolling stock between 2014 and 2016. Projects earmarked for investment in the next three years include the Baikal-Amur Mainline and Trans-Siberian Express, upgrades to the Mezhdurechensk-Taishet freight line, improvements to rail infrastructure around Moscow and the construction of a new line to bypass Krasnodar hub. Across the entire network more than 9,000 km of railway will be reconstructed between 2014-2016 and more than 1,500 new locomotives are expected to be procured.