Columns

Marginal: Surprise?

So now people are buying small cars.

EuroAuto: Euro Developments in Hybrids (Including Hydrogen)

Although this still may be in the conceptual stages, aggressive work is going on in the U.K. focused on alternative powertrains.

Dudder: Deja vu, Again

I never thought I'd live to see a repeat of 1976, but it is looking like we are about to enter a prolonged period of retreat on many fronts as the "malaise" of the recent years settles upon the electorate.

Competitive Challenges: Leadership Lagging

If it doesn't have enough problems, the auto industry is being vexed by another: a lack of good people-especially at the top.

Profiles: Richard Gresens: From Trains, Planes and. . .Vacuum Cleaners

Richard Gresens has always been fascinated with speed and movement.

Insight: India Rising

It doesn't take much examination of the global competitive landscape to see that India is emerging as a formidable competitor to the United States.

Close Up: Mikron Ideo 2

People looking for either machining on six faces of a workpiece or for machining of two of the same parts at the same time or machining of two different workpieces at the same time or...well, you get it, there are plenty of options...should consider the Ideo 2 transfer machining system from Mikron Corp. (www.mikron.com; Monroe, CT). This machining system is capable of handling workpieces-be they steel, aluminum or something in between-measuring up to 250 x 250 x 250 mm.

Insider: Farley's Job One

Jim Farley has what some might say is the most difficult-yet possibly the most rewarding-job in the auto industry, if he can pull off a monumental task.

Notable

Combustion Chemistry Analysis

Reaction Design’s (www.reactiondesign.com) simulation tools designed to model fuel mixture chemical reactions during the combustion process have been criticized for taking too much time and draining computing resources, so its new CHEMKIN-PRO software package has been designed to operate at faster speeds. “Through a new algorithmic technique we can now take the run time down by a factor up to 20 from where we were just last year,” says Bernie Rosenthal, company CEO, who cites a recent benchmark study of the CHEMKIN-PRO software showing simulation time on a large gas turbine engine dropping to 13 minutes from 5 hours and an ICE engine simulation going to 3 minutes from just under one hour.

Innovation and Utility: Not Strange Bedfellows, But the Same Fellow

Something Really New is something really new, inasmuch as it is a book that, as its subtitle promises, includes “three simple steps” that can be used to create products. “Innovative products.” Denis J.

Math & Modeling Made Simpler

While the high-performance software package Maple from Maplesoft (www.maplesoft.com; Waterloo, Ontario) has long been used by engineers for solving mathematical problems and to create related technical documents, Jim Cooper, company CEO, says, “We wanted to make the product easy to use.” After all, the problems to be solved are tough enough.

The Environment Is Good for Kolbenschmidt Pierburg

While many automotive companies seem to be looking to places other than southeastern Michigan for facilities—and let’s face it, there are few companies nowadays that are looking to open anything—Kolbenschmidt Pierburg AG (www.kspg.com; Neckarsulm, Germany) has just opened a 60,000-ft2 technical center in Auburn Hills, MI.

Better Wheel Bearings

Typically, drive torque is transmitted between the wheel bearing and the axle journal via radial splines.

Godin On Making Meatballs

Chances are, you’re in the meatball business.

Is Gas the Answer for Diesel Emissions?

Tighten the fuel economy standards, and diesels begin to appear in future product plans.

Better, Faster, Smarter Modeling

Siemens PLM Software has developed what it claims—and the patent is pending—is technology that provides history-free, feature-based modeling.

Warrack Leach Rethinks the Pickup

“I am working on cars for an international audience and I did not expect that would happen in my career, especially having grown up in regional Victoria in Australia.” —Warrack Leach.

Feature

(Relatively) High-Volume Carbon Fiber

When it comes to carbon fiber for vehicle applications, the definition of what constitutes a "volume" vehicle has a different meaning than most everyone understands.

Are Hidebound OEMs Missing The Cattle Call?

Cost pressures, time, and timidity are keeping OEMs from realizing the full potential of leather trimmed interiors, says Seton Leather. "Suddenly, leather in non-seating applications is really taking off, so we are either lucky or smart that we made the decision 20 years ago to focus on wrapping interior components with leather," says Rodney Hammond, v.p. and general manager, Seton Leather (Farmington Hills, MI; www.setonleather.com). That decision saw Seton wrapping instrument panels for Mercedes and Volvo, and has expanded to include programs for Cadillac and Buick, an upcoming Chrysler model, and few of the transplant OEMs.

Field Guide: Dassault Systèmes

While Dassault Systèmes is all about 3D virtualization-create, share, and experience life through virtual design, production, testing, and simulation-the company's software products are anything but virtual.

Nissan GT-R: Too Much is Never Enough

Any doubts that technology could be harnessed to produce supercar-surpassing performance in a well-rounded package have been put to rest. "Mr.

On The Passat CC, Volkswagen Design & Why Small Can Be Big

Oliver Stefani has worked on a variety of vehicles for Volkswagen, from advanced studies to the New Beetle Convertible. He did the exterior design for the forthcoming Passat CC, a car that is unlike most other Volkswagen models-but still, he insists, a Volkswagen.

From Small Things: Big Differences

Ford Motor Company is aggressively pursuing the small - nano-scale improvements - in its quest to make better, lighter vehicles.

Reshaping the '09 Infiniti FX

Since making its debut on the auto show circuit in 2001, Infiniti's FX has generated a love/hate relationship for its polarizing design. Now, it's time to diminish the hate.

EDAG: From Limos To Moab To...?

Not only does this German company create clever concepts, but it has even launched into production of an Israeli-developed all-terrain vehicle—in metro Detroit.

Objects of Interest

Objects of Interest: June 2008

Lightweight Rivet ToolEmhart Teknologies’ (www.emhart.com) new POP ProSet 3400 Rivet Tool can accommodate all size 4, 5, 6 and 8 blind rivets, including high-strength and stainless steel.