Friday, December 13

Eurobrake: Floby’s Aluminum Discs Timely For Light-Weighting Trend


DRESDEN, Germany– Automotive Components Floby (AC Floby) is at the annual EuroBrake conference here with its light-weight brake discs that seems a well-timed product innovation given the attention on light-weighting by automakers and Tier-One suppliers.

The SICA Light discs are: 30% to 50% lighter than their cast iron equivalents; corrosion resistant; durable–Floby says the aluminum brake discs should never have to be replaced during the life of the vehicle.

Looking at comparisons, Floby says that SICA Light discs are 50% lighter than GCI and Coated GCI discs, and three times as durable as GCI and Coated GCI discs. The environmental footprint of the discs, says Floby, is half that of GCI discs.

Development Engineer Adam Thomas says the SICA Light disc has been developed “with silicon carbide reinforced aluminum to result in a ligher, more durable and more corrosion resistant product.” The rustproof material also reduces emissions in the atmosphere. The aluminum material makes it easier to recycle and cuts down on particulate pollution.

Floby has been in business since 1957 and is based near Gothenberg Sweden. It’s product lines include brake discs, connecting rods, and wheel hubs. Indeed, Floby is one of the largest manufacturers of wheel hubs for commercial vehicles.

Floby‘s focus on light-weighting is timely for where the vehicle manufacturing trends are headed. With changes in government fuel economy and emissions regulations occuring globally, reducing structural weight is one of the most important ways of reducing fuel consumption. A 10 percent reduction in vehicle mass yields approximately a 6-8 percent increase in fuel economy, according to leading studies.

Following a restructuring two years ago, AC Floby has made it a strategic objective to embark upon a number of environmental initiatives. The cornerstone of this strategy has been the wholesale switch of the company’s inbound transportation from individual trucks to more streamlined train and inter-modal solutions. So, not only is the company seeking to produce products that provide greener solutions for customers, it is efforting a greener way of doing business and producing the components.

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David Kiley is Chief of Content for The BRAKE Report. Kiley is an award-winning business journalist and author, having covered the auto industry for USA Today, Businessweek, AOL/Huffington Post, as well as written articles for Automobile and Popular Mechanics.