Hot new opportunities are popping for the aluminum industry. In today’s unpredictable economy, this is excellent news. With marketplace uncertainties, we can no longer rely on the “tried and true” sources of business. Diversifying by investing in new offerings and services has proven to be an effective way to reduce risk and grow. It can be challenging to take on a new products and services, but by paying attention to demand and industry trends, you can ensure you are on the right track!
Aluminum Industry: The New “Mr. Popular”
What was in demand yesterday may not be tomorrow, and that is both an opportunity and challenge. Steel will always be an important part of our businesses, but current trends in aluminum suggest there may be additional opportunities for growth.
We’ve seen a steady increase in aluminum manufacturing for several attractive reasons:
- Corrosion resistance: Aluminum is less costly than stainless steel and is becoming a popular alternative for many industries. Although mild/carbon steel also has a lower cost than stainless steel as well, it does not have many of the other beneficial properties.
- Weight matters: Aluminum is approximately 1/3 the weight of most steel, yet it retains its strength, making it a preferred material for stamped metal parts.
- Availability: Aluminum is one of the most abundant metals on earth. It is considered environmentally friendly, with over 75% of all aluminum produced in the U.S. still in use today.
What products are boosting aluminum industry growth?
Automotive: because of its weight and anticorrosive properties, companies like Ford incorporate more and more aluminum alloys into their vehicles. For example, the new F-150, is 700 pounds lighter than the original! A lighter vehicle improve power to weight ratios and also reduce emissions while increasing the overall fuel economy.
Aerospace: Today, commercial aircraft can be approximately 80% aluminum alloys and plan to increase that percentage resulting in more aluminum castings. By using aluminum casting technology, other types of manufacturers can lower production costs while taking advantage of aluminum’s plasticity to achieve more complex designs. Like automobiles, aircraft fuel efficiency is a significant concern now and for the future of aviation. Lighter and more aerodynamic planes help cut fuel consumption.
Appliances: Standard kitchen appliances started to take advantage of aluminum‘s popularity way back in the 1980s because brushed aluminum offered a sleek modern look. That design trend continues today with many modern appliances being made from aluminum. We also see this trend in our current technological devices. Laptops, TV’s, and cellular phones have jumped on the trend by creating lighter yet sturdy products.
From automobiles to airplanes, to everyday appliances, aluminum is an increasingly popular metal solution.
Get the most out of your furnace.
Manufactures, die casters, and forgers alike can increase your ability to make and process aluminum parts. As you know, heat treating is a necessary process for coil-coating aluminum sheets, and also for the production of regular aluminum parts and products. If you are noticing a slowdown in steel, let’s discuss how you can fill the gaps with new opportunities.
The Heat is On At Onex
Onex is ready to help you with your equipment and processes. We can help you branch out and take advantage of diversification opportunities. Onex will work with you to optimize your current equipment or build a new furnace if you need it.
Contact Onex today to discuss your refractory and combustion needs. We also provide consulting services and custom material procurement plans.