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SinterCast Forecasts More Growth as CGI Expands

May 20, 2010
New series production helps more than double 2009 volume
SinterCast AB is confident of its potential in the global foundry industry as automakers start or expand series production of components in compacted graphite iron. New series production is primarily responsible for a more than doubling of the volume of CGI produced by the SinterCast process, from 400,000 engine equivalents in 2009 to over 900,000 engine equivalents worldwide in 2010. The company presented the results at its annual general meeting this week, in Stockholm. Compacted graphite iron (CGI) is an alternative to gray iron and aluminum for automotive engine designs. It offers higher tensile strengths, fatigue strength, and stiffness than those materials so automotive designers may achieve engine performance and fuel economy with low component weight, lower noise factors, and low emissions. SinterCast licenses the production process it developed, now in its third generation, to automakers and their suppliers worldwide. SinterCast president and CEO Dr. Steve Dawson listed the Ford 6.7L V8 engine and 10 different exhaust components produced by China’s Dashiang Precision Co. Ltd., as examples of new, high-volume CGI series production programs. However, he reported that the output rate of most of the components that began production before the start of the global recession in 2008 continues to be lower than the pre-downturn volume. Dawson added that results from the first quarter of 2010 show the first increase in volumes for these older programs since the third quarter of 2008. Continued growth of the new production programs, along with more program launches and the anticipated recovery of older programs, provide SinterCast with an opportunity for positive cash flow in 2010, as well as future growth. Dawson said that SinterCast is engaged in several discussions toward new CGI production programs, foundries’ ongoing difficulties sourcing capital make it difficult to predict the timing of such installations. One new production program will be Audi AG’s 3.0-liter V6 diesel engine. Each of the new engine’s three power ratings (200 to 246 hp) will have CGI cylinder blocks, and Audi engineers reduced the total weight of the engine from 218 to 193 kg, improving fuel economy 22-29% over previous, 2.7-liter versions of the V6, with lower CO 2 emissions. Production of the new blocks is due to begin at Tupy in Brazil later this year.