NEW YORK Eastern Alloys
Inc. is looking to push its new zinc alloy to the automotive
industry this year, Ryan Winter, manager of customer engineered
services, told AMM.
The Maybrook, N.Y.-based die
casters EZAC alloymade primarily of zinc, aluminum
and copperhas a number of appealing traits for
automakers, including creep resistance, strength and hardness,
Zinc alloys have previously had
issues with creepwhen a part deforms over time in extreme
temperaturesand, therefore, arent used in
under-the-hood automotive applications, where parts are exposed
to hot temperatures and significant stress.
The EZAC alloy might also be
appealing to automakers looking for lighter-weight materials to
meet stricter fuel emissions standards coming out of
Washington, according to Winter.
"This improved creep resistance
will hopefully get us into automotive markets, including
under-the-hood applications," he said. "(A lot of these
applications) are made of steel or cast iron that are much
heavier than zinc. As automakers try to cut down weight, EZAC
should be considered as it is lighter than many of the other
metals used in automotive components, such as steel."
Winter noted that zinc is still
heavier than aluminum and magnesium, two other materials of
choice for automakers. But Eastern Alloys has developed a way
to reduce the thickness of the zinc and keep the strength, with
zinc also cheaper to manufacture, he added.
"Many automotive manufacturers
prefer incorporating lighter materials, such as aluminum and
magnesium, in their designs, but they like the low
manufacturing costs of zinc," Winter said. "Our solution is to
offer a zinc alloy product such as EZAC that is almost three
times as strong as aluminum and magnesium but far more fluid.
We can therefore cast thinner walls (but keep the strength). It
is like having the best of both worlds."
In addition to automotive, EZAC
is targeting other markets such as medical devises and LED
"We feel that EZAC checks most
boxes. Its high strength, its highly fluid so
its easy to cast, its creep resistant, its
hard, its more cost efficient," Winter said.