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March 22nd, 2013

Ceramics and glass business news of the week

Published on March 22nd, 2013 | Edited by: Eileen De Guire

Here is what we are hearing:

Morgan Technical Ceramics launches new high-performance piezoelectric material

Morgan Technical Ceramics, a market leader in the design and manufacture of high-quality ceramic solutions, is extending its material portfolio with the launch of a new piezoelectric material. PZT5K1 is suitable for applications in the fields of scientific instrumentation, maritime, medical, energy harvesting. and general industry. PZT5K1 is just one of a range of PZT materials supplied by the company. The new material’s high density and low porosity mean the material can be used for machining 1-3 composite structures in highly sensitive sonar and medical ultrasonic transducers, as well as high-performance actuators, specialist sensors, and energy harvesting devices. Using an innovative new core process, Morgan manufactures the material to offer optimised voltage charge coefficients. Its high d33 rating improves the electrical charge generated in energy harvesting applications, while its high d31 coefficient enhances the levels of displacement in actuators. Bimorph components are available in a variety of sizes and shapes, as squares, rectangles and discs. Sizes range from 6-74mm in length and 1-43mm in width. Discs and components up to 254mm in diameter can be manufactured in an extensive range of thicknesses, between 3-35mm. Components are typically supplied with fired-on silver electrodes although options include thin nickel electrodes.

Glassman Europe 2013 conference presentations announced

The conference will be held in conjunction with the exhibition and will provide a platform for the hollow and container glass manufacturing industries to meet in an intimate, relaxed environment and do business with decision makers involved in all aspects of design, process and production. The program will discuss market trends and analysis, technology developments, case studies and innovation. Speakers include: Stölzle Glass, FEVE, Glass Global, British Glass, Polish Institute of Ceramics and Building Materials, Tses Glass, TU Freiberg (Freiberg University), Arc International, AGMS, Glass Service, Pneumofore, Forehearth Services, Xpar Vision, Heye International, Ilis GmbH, MSC & SGCC , JLI Vision, Athena, and Vertech

Osram LEDs, halogen Eco bulb lights up the Aidastella cruise ship

Osram is illuminating the tenth cruise ship of the Aida Fleet with 9,000 lamps and more than 1 kilometer of LED strips. The “swimming city” has a total length of 253.33 metres and a width of 32.20 metres, and offers space for around 2,500 passengers. “Cruise ships with their complex range of demands are in reality lighthouses for lighting applications,” commented Martin Nüboldt, the manager responsible for the project at Osram. The ship was inaugurated with the name of Aidastella in Warnemünde, Germany, on March 16, 2013. Diverse areas were equipped with 9,000 Osram halogen Eco lamps and 1,200 metres of flexible LED modules ensure both white and coloured light.

PANalytical launches new XRF analysis software

PANalytical, the world’s leading supplier of analytical X-ray equipment and software, is set to launch its new software for X-ray fluorescence (XRF) systems. PANalytical developed Stratos, a brand new software package, for both the Epsilon 3 and Axios spectrometer ranges. The company will also be releasing an upgrade of the FingerPrint software for the Epsilon 3 range. Stratos features built-in intelligence and can quickly and accurately analyze the thickness and composition of coatings, surface layers and layered structures. Multi-layer samples can be analyzed with bulk standards, without the need for in-type standards that are sometimes hard to source. Another significant advantage of the software is its flexibility and the ease of use provided by the ‘Virtual Analyst’. This unique tool is a consultant for advanced method development and provides optimum measurement settings for analysis, which can be time-consuming for complex stack structures. Stratos is able to analyze more than 16 layers, depending on their thickness and composition. It is also easily combined with PANalytical’s Omnian semi-quantitative software.

Morgan Thermal Ceramics offers Cerox fired refractory shapes and engineering expertise

Morgan Thermal Ceramics announced the availability of Cerox fired refractory shapes, offered in a range of material compositions, including many specifically used for the manufacture of rotating and non-rotating airplane components and automotive turbochargers. Dense, hard, and chemically stable, Cerox fired refractory shapes offer resistance to chemical attack from acids, slags, and gases to produce the cleaner, contaminant-free metal desired by end users in aerospace and automotive steel foundries. Fired shapes manufactured from Sillimanite Cerox 200 are composed of 74 percent alumina and fired mullite, which are prized for their chemical attack resistance, good thermal shock, and excellent non-wetting characteristics at temperatures as high as 2,850°F. Other materials available include Cerox 700 which has a high alumina content as well as versatile shape capability, making it ideal for products with complex shapes, including crucibles, tundishes, and launder systems. For complex shapes, Cerox 720 which also features a high alumina content, is particularly adapted to developing shapes with thin walls, due to its fine grain and high strength.

Fraunhofer IKTS partners with Mayur Renergy Solutions Inc. to develop SOFC systems for the Indian market

To provide clean and green energy alternatives at an affordable cost, Mayur Renergy Solution (a Pune- & Boston-based corporation) has signed a contract with the Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems (IKTS), Germany, to develop solid oxide fuel cell products for the markets in developing countries. The main goal is the development of a fuel cell product at local prices that will help to solve the electricity situation in India and other developing countries. Envisioned is a micro power plant which will be installed in every house. As part of this promising project Fraunhofer IKTS will develop prototypes based on the established Eneramic fuel cell system, which will be extended for higher power classes. Mayur’s vision is to combine solar, wind, biogas and fuel cell technologies to provide energy independence to rural India and thus bringing prosperity and stability to the rural economy. Fraunhofer IKTS will develop first prototypes until 2014 and transfer the know how to Mayur, who in turn will work on commercializing the technology.

H.C. Starck achieves successful fiscal year 2012 despite considerable economic slowdown

H.C. Starck, one of the leading manufacturers of customer-specific powders and components made from technology metals and advanced ceramics, has sustained its position in 2012 despite a more difficult market environment. The company achieved 862.9 million euros in sales, after 883.2 million euros in the extraordinary strong growth year 2011. As of December 31, 2012, the company had 2,926 employees (2011: 2,816). “H.C. Starck was able expand its market position in all major industries, maintain its sales at the level of the previous year despite falling metal prices, and achieve the second best result in the last ten years,” says Andreas Meier, chairman. The company was able to strengthen its powder business by gaining market share for high capacity tantalum powders and expanding its niobium business significantly. In the business segment of fabricated products and components, H.C. Starck has successfully responded to strong demand from the semiconductor industry and the chemical processing industry. Also, the company successfully expanded into the rapidly growing market of high temperature furnaces with the production of highly complex heat shields and crucibles made of molybdenum and tungsten for sapphire furnaces used in LED production. The company invested a double-digit million euro sum in the expansion of its Asia business and in the targeted expansion of production capacities at its German sites. Research and development activities of H.C. Starck focused on a new generation of high-capacity tantalum powders. The company also will continue to drive future technologies. Since mid-2012, H.C. Starck operates a joint venture with Japan New Chisso Corp. for cathode material for high-performance lithium ion batteries. Part of H.C. Starck’s long-term strategy is the recycling of raw materials. In the procurement of primary raw materials, the company continues to rely exclusively on conflict-free raw materials in accordance with the guidelines of the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition.

US body armor procurement report and scenario analysis offered

Vector Strategy’s 2013 US military body armor procurement analysis is available for immediate purchase and delivery effective. This report provides an analysis of 2000 to 2013 US military body armor procurement and three scenarios for 2014 to 2020 procurement. Each scenario is based on a different set of assumptions about procurement of next generation body armor systems, sustainment of legacy body armor systems, and industrial base sustainment policies or outcomes. We have outlined tradeoffs that the DOD will need to make as they develop future funding requirements for the Army’s Soldier Protection System and the USMC’s Modular Scalable Protection System. The report also provides an in depth analysis of 2008 to 2013 US military sustainment awards and questions DOD’s strategy regarding the sustainment of their body armor inventory. This report is essential for organizations who need to understand future US military body armor procurement and the tradeoffs made when optimizing modernization, sustainment, and the industrial base in an era of severe DOD fiscal constraint.


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