Mass Reduction Competition (No, Not a Diet Program)

Article From: 8/22/2012 Automotive Design & Production

As OEMs face the proposed 54.5 CAFE standard, they are probably anything but calm.

Computer-aided engineering can facilitate vehicle lightweighting.

As OEMs face the proposed 54.5 CAFE standard, they are probably anything but calm. Which makes it somewhat amusing that the Center for Automotive Research (CAR; has organized the Coalition for Automotive Lightweighting Materials (CALM) initiative.

CALM is about reducing vehicle mass through a mixed-materials approach.

Supplementing those efforts is a new award program sponsored by Altair (, a company with particular expertise in computer-aided engineering software. It is called the Altair Enlighten Award; it will be presented in August 2013, in collaboration with CAR, to mark achievements of weight reduction in the auto industry, from motorcycles to buses, and vehicles in between.

Explains Tony Norton, senior director of global automotive for Altair, “Weight reduction can be combined with any fuel economy technologies to increase efficiency gains. Automakers and their supply base are striving to reduce material usage and fuel consumption while improving vehicle performance and safety through weight reduction techniques. The Altair Enlighten Award provides a platform to showcase the success stories, allowing industry leaders to be recognized by their peers and emphasizing the need to achieve the next level of light-weighting technology.”

Information on the competition will be available at the Altair Enlighten website ( starting October 1, 2012. Designs must be on production vehicles produced between August 2012 and August 2013.

No reason to be calm about this.