Nov/Dec 2011

Nov/Dec 2011 ADP


Images from Ford’s SEM

In their quest for quality, the personnel at Ford’s Dunton Technical Centre in Brentwood, Essex, England, use a scanning electron microscope.

Laser-Sintering for Hybrid Sports Car

Westfield Sportscars ( is a British-owned and –operated firm that hand builds sports cars.

3D Printing a Car. Yes, a Car.

Although rapid prototyping isn’t uncommon in the auto industry (see:, the technology is typically used by automakers to make pieces and panels.

Every Second Counts at Penske Racing

During a NASCAR season, parts break.

The MV-1: Accessible Transportation

It’s not just a van: The MV-1 is designed from the ground up for wheelchair accessibility.

Powering the 2012 Cadillac SRX

“When we started planning to equip this vehicle with the 3.6-liter engine, I challenged our engineers to achieve fuel efficiency.” That’s Liz Pilibosian, vehicle chief engineer for the 2012 Cadillac SRX.

Polycarbonate Contributes to EV Range

Mass reduction is critical for fuel economy improvement in any vehicle.

Ford’s Powertrain Approach

Ford continues to pursue an internal combustion engine strategy predicated on the “EcoBoost” technology that it is now proliferating in a variety of sizes offering in a variety of cars, with the objective of having the engines available in 90% of its North American offerings by 2013.  The fundamental aspects that provide improved fuel economy without a sacrifice in performance are turbocharging, direct injection, and twin independent variable camshaft timing. The most recent EcoBoost engine comes out of the Ford Dunton Technical Center in the U.K.

KEMET Adds Plant for Hybrid and EV Capacitors

KEMET Corp. (, a manufacturer of capacitors for everything from industrial lighting to the International Space Station, has opened a $34-million, 52,000 ft² power film capacitor production facility in the lower level of its Simpsonville, SC, offices to build electrical components for hybrid and electric vehicles (EVs). This is in line with the company’s expectation that the production of those vehicles will increase in volume by 19% over the next 10 years. The manufacturing facility is KEMET’s first in the United States and 23rd worldwide. Capacitors are two-terminal electrical components used to store energy in an electric field.


Higher Fuel Economy & Supplier Opportunities

If CAFE standards and emissions reduction are mandates that ebb and flow rather than offering a steady trend that can be extrapolated for new product development, how do automotive component suppliers manage their participation in this dynamic environment?

The Green Guide

Flame Treatment Technology a Green Move for GM; A Cleaner Cleaner; Freudenberg's “Simple” Devices May Make Big Differences in Battery Systems; SolidWorks “Sustainability” Offers Real-Time Green Solutions; Siemens’ “Ctrl-Energy” Monitors Machine Tool Energy Use

Be Prepared

No one can control extraneous conditions —gas prices, currency exchanges, new market entrants. But anyone can control what they’ll do in the face of changes.


How the Chevrolet Sonic Proves Times Have Changed @ GM

As vehicle manufacturers begin to focus on global products, small cars take on a new emphasis. And the 2012 Chevrolet Sonic is a new global car, one that is representative of GM’s new competitiveness.

PLM When You Want It

Want some PLM? Here’s what two major product lifecycle management (PLM) vendors are offering through two very different online stores.

Kia’s Latest Rio

Kia’s redesigned B-segment car is so close to the mark it should cause worry among the world’s top tier automakers.

Federal-Mogul Advances Ignition

New advanced combustion strategies can mean new approaches to creating that combustion event. Federal-Mogul has developed a corona ignition technology that can replace the spark plug with impressive results.

Powertrain Machining Approaches—Then & Now

Although production volumes are going up, the need for flexibility in powertrain machin-ing has grown more important. Here’s a look at how things have changed.

Fungus Foam

A New York start-up is using agricultural waste products and mushroom roots to develop petroleum-free, eco-friendly foam.

Mays on Design

A veteran designer talks about global design, national design and why he doesn’t follow trends.

Engineering the 2012 Hyundai Veloster

Sure, it looks like nothing else on the road. Yes, there is a cleverly hidden third door. There’s plenty of tech on the inside. It drives like something a couple segments above. And the MSRP is incredible. Go figure.