University of Wisconsin-Madison Captures Innovations in Aluminum Award At FutureTruck Challenge

Young Engineers Take Full Advantage of Performance Aluminum for Safety,

Environmental Benefits

Jun 16, 2000, 01:00 ET from Aluminum Association

    MESA, Ariz., June 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Being an engineering student is a
 stressful and serious affair, but the students from the University of
 Wisconsin-Madison know how to lighten up.
     In a competition to redesign and modify a General Motors sport-utility
 vehicle for maximum fuel efficiency and low emissions, students from Madison
 won the Innovations in Aluminum design at the inaugural FutureTruck Challenge
 at GM's desert proving grounds in Mesa, Arizona in a competition against 15
 other top engineering schools from the U.S. and Canada.
     "The University of Wisconsin's design shows the clear superiority of high-
 strength, low-weight aluminum to meet the auto manufacturers' safety and
 performance requirements for environmentally-friendly vehicles.  People tend
 to focus on high-tech engines, but reducing vehicle weight is the easiest and
 most cost-effective way to boost fuel economy and cut emissions," said Dr.
 Richard Klimisch, Vice President, Auto and Light Group, The Aluminum
     The program teaches engineering students how to utilize aluminum's safety,
 environmental and performance advantages.  As aluminum usage in cars and light
 trucks has doubled in the past decade, this will become increasingly
 important.  Aluminum usage is skyrocketing in the auto industry because:
     * A six to eight percent fuel savings can be realized for every 10 percent
       weight reduction by substituting aluminum for much heavier steel.
     * Each pound of aluminum replacing two pounds of steel can save a net 20
       pounds of CO2  equivalents over the typical lifetime of a vehicle.
     * Nearly 90 percent of automotive aluminum is currently recovered and
     Starting with a stock 2000 Chevrolet Suburban, the engineering students
 implemented a very aggressive weight reduction campaign.  The use of aluminum
 included, but was not limited to, the frame, front spindles, fuels tanks,
 transmission housing, transfer case and front differential case.
     FutureTruck 2000 is a four-year advanced vehicle technology competition
 that seeks to redesign a sport utility vehicle for greater fuel efficiency,
 ultra-low emissions and decreased greenhouse gas impact.
     The first year's competition, vehicle testing and judging took place June
 8-15, 2000, at the General Motors Desert Proving Ground in Mesa, Arizona.
     For more information on the advantages of automotive aluminum, visit
     The Aluminum Association, based in Washington, DC with offices in Detroit,
 MI, represents primary producers of aluminum, recyclers, and producers of
 semi-fabricated products.  Member companies operate almost 200 plants in 37

SOURCE Aluminum Association