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Metal Casting Technologies : March 2011
6 www.metals.rala.com.au The electric car is becoming inevitable n this first edition of Metal Casting Technologies for 2011 it has a "technology" theme. In the process of my research for this column I finally decided that, once more, the Electric Vehicle is claiming the high ground in driving new technologies: particularly battery technologies. How will this new world of electric vehicles impact on metal casters? We are looking at a runway of 20-30 years for massive uptake of electric vehicles because their effectiveness and value will be dependent, mainly on a huge futuristic leap in battery technology. And, of course there are other technologies on the research agendas: fuel cell, hydrogen etc. It is therefore vital that this transitioning process to a new world order for cars enables the metal casters to be part of it and find their place within this new technology. The petrol engine and its attendant back-up systems have been the domain of the metal casting industry for most of last century and will remain so until the EV's prove their place. But metal casters need to know how their role can capitalise and evolve at the same pace. There is no doubt that nearly every major automaker has an active program to develop and introduce EV's. As well as gearing up to training engineering graduates to meet the demand for extra engineering on EV's, President Obama, in his 2011 State of the Union address, set a goal of one million electric vehicles to be on the road in the US by 2015. The aim is to build U.S. leadership in technologies that reduce dependence on oil, enhance environmental stewardship, and promote transportation sustainability, while creating high quality jobs and economic growth. The million EV's would include plug-in hybrids, extended range electric vehicles, and all-electric vehicles. To reach this goal, President Obama has proposed to further support EV manufacturing by revised tax incentives plus greater research and development, investments, and programs to encourage communities to invest in infrastructure for EV's. To further reinforce this vision, up to $5 million in funding has immediately been provided to support Graduate Automotive Technology Education (GATE) Centres of Excellence. The GATE Centres will focus on educating a future workforce of automotive Barbara Cail CONTRIBUTORS EDITORIAL I JOHN HERMES D. BAUTISTA PMAI Technical Consultant DR. P. C. MAITY Dr. P. C. Maity, Metal Casting and Materials Engineer GOPAL PADKI Gopal Padki is a senior executive member of HA in China. HA is committed to green, environment and energy efficient processes for the best performance of foundries worldwide. JEFF F. MEREDITH Casting Solutions Pty Ltd JOHN PEARCE Metals Specialist, MTEC National Metals and Materials Technology Centre, Thailand