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Strategic Growth Projects
Here are the developments that we at Luxfer are excited about:-
Bio-absorbable Medical Implant Alloys.
Many medical implants are only required on a temporary basis to support skeletal or tissue structures whilst the body’s natural healing process occurs. The last decade has seen a significant increase in the amount of medical research being undertaken across the globe on bio-absorbable materials, mainly degradable polymers, particularly in the fields of orthopaedic trauma fixation, tissue repair and vascular intervention, where the use of metallic implants, usually titanium or stainless steel, is commonplace. Magnesium alloys offer the potential to combine the mechanical property benefits of metallic implants whilst improving on the bio-absorbable nature of degradable polymers.
Since 2005, Luxfer Holdings PLC Division Magnesium Elektron has carried out extensive research and development, in close collaboration with its university network and a number of leading medical device companies, to create a range of bio-absorbable magnesium alloys for potential use in bio-absorbable medical implants.
Magnesium Elektron’s development, manufacturing and testing is carried out in a new state of the art production facility which achieved its medical ISO 13485 accreditation in December 2014. Elektron believes it is the first manufacturing facility, producing bio-absorbable metallic materials, to achieve this accreditation.
The Elektron Synermag® range of bio-absorbable alloys has undergone considerable in-vitro and in-vivo evaluation in various potential applications and further trials are planned. In the field of cardiovascular intervention, the first generation Synermag® alloy has been used as the platform material for a bio-absorbable metallic stent and this product has now advanced to human clinical trials. Magnesium Elektron expects to commence commercial production of this new platform technology sometime during 2016.
Magnesium Elektron alloys approved by FAA for aircraft interiors for reducing weight.
Magnesium alloys were banned from use in aircraft seating in the 1950’s after problems with corrosion of some of the primitive alloys being used at the time. After several years of persuading the Federal Aviation Administration to look again at our modern magnesium alloys they undertook full-scale flame testing of seats made with structural components made from our Elektron ® alloys in direct comparison with ones using the standard 7-series aluminium components. This proved that our magnesium alloys performed as well as the aluminium, indeed the peak temperature was slightly lower.
The advantage to the seat manufacturer and the airline is that magnesium is elementally 30% lighter than aluminium, and weight savings on a part by part basis can be up to 25%. This FAA approval opens the door to an exciting growth prospect for the Magnesium Elektron Division of Luxfer Holdings PLC.
Diesel Catalysts — Recent Adverse Publicity.
MEL Chemicals Division of Luxfer Holdings PLC has a significant presence globally in automotive catalysis, but the vast majority of the products that we sell today go into three-way-catalyst (TWC) systems for gasoline, or petrol, engines.
Recent publicity over the admission that certain diesel-engined vehicles fail to legitimately meet emission-control testing has occasioned several enquiries about whether MEL, known for its ceria-zirconia technology applied in gasoline-engined vehicles globally, might have products that could help improve matters.
Over recent years, diesel emissions legislation has focussed on the reduction of NOx (oxides of nitrogen) and particulates, with North America, Europe and Japan leading the way with the most-demanding emission standards. With Climate Change concerns about the effect of greenhouse gases such as CO2, and health concerns over NOx and particulates, ever-tightening emission limits are constantly driving the need for new catalyst technologies to control vehicle emissions.
MEL Chemicals has a deep understanding of the functionality of the various technologies used to control CO2, NOx, and particulate emission levels for both existing and upcoming regulations. As stated above, to date the vast majority of our automotive products have gone into gasoline catalyst systems. We have, however, developed materials that are suitable for use in the NOx traps, Passive NOx adsorbers, urea-based Selective Catalytic Reducers (SCR), and Diesel Particulate Filters (DPF) used variously in diesel catalyst systems.
A further challenge is expected to come from World Harmonised Test Cycles and Real World Driving Emissions standards. With the adoption of these testing protocols, vehicles’ emission control systems will need to meet emissions standards throughout the whole of a ‘real-life driving’ cycle, rather than just at a bench or on a rolling-road. Existing exhaust treatment systems may well need to be re-designed to cope with these new requirements.
Development in this area is increasingly focusing on simplifying the number of ‘boxes’ in the system through the combination of previously-separate technologies, for example SCR on DPF. MEL Chemicals has high-temperature, thermally-stable, materials able to combine NOx reduction with passive or active particulate capture in such a combination system.
We believe that MEL Chemicals ceria-zirconia mixed oxide technology has much to offer towards improving diesel engine NOx emissions, probably in combination with the zeolite technology used today, and we are offering our technology to the major automotive catalyst manufacturers.
For more information on MEL’s automotive catalysis products, please visit www.zrchem.com where contact information is available.
SoluMag™ High-Strength, Soluble Magnesium alloy
SoluMag™ is a proprietary high-strength, soluble magnesium alloy developed specifically for making down-hole oil and gas industry fracking tools that will quickly and safely dissolve after use. The company has applied for a patent for the alloy.
Traditional fracking requires expensive machinery to remove plugs, balls and other temporary tools that have served their purpose, thus to enable an unimpeded flow of oil and gas. Tools made from SoluMag dissolve completely after use, eliminating the need for such costly intervention.
“SoluMag dissolves quickly, predictably and at lower temperatures than other soluble materials used in these applications,” said Guy Roberts, head of sales and marketing for Magnesium Elektron. The first public showing of SoluMag took place at the Global Petroleum Show in Calgary, Canada, in June. A time-lapse video showed the material being dissolved in saline solution. Also on show were samples at various levels of dissolution, as well as test data covering strength and corrosion rates. This generated a high level of interest from completion companies and tool suppliers and led to initial product sales for laboratory and field testing.
Magnesium Elektron has since announced further product developments, including the ability to customize rates at which the alloy dissolves.
Roberts noted that SoluMag joins a long line of highly specialized magnesium alloys developed by Magnesium Elektron, including SynerMag®, a dissolving alloy now undergoing in-body tests for cardiovascular stents, as well as a wide range of high-performance aerospace alloys, including Elektron® 43, which was recently approved for use in civilian aircraft seats. “Our aerospace pedigree means that our alloys are of the highest quality and consistency, so end-users can be confident that tools made from SoluMag will behave predictably down-hole,” he said.
Find out more about SoluMag™ at http://www.magnesium-elektron.com/
Hydrogen Gas Systems
Luxfer’s Dynecell® products are the leading line of lightweight high-pressure hydrogen storage cylinders used by a number of the world’s largest OEMs that design, develop and manufacture state of the art compressed hydrogen storage systems for fuel cell and internal combustion engines.
The Dynecell advantage is our lightweight, impermeable Type 3 cylinder technology, coupled with the high precision gas flow control provided by Luxfer’s proprietary high-pressure hydrogen valve. The result is a certified, cost-effective hydrogen storage solution that is ideal for private and fleet automobiles, transit buses, stationary storage and bulk hauling applications.
Available with operating pressures ranging from 5,076 psi (350 bar) to 10,153 psi (700 bar). Luxfer Dynecell cylinders can be fast filled.
Dynecell in action around the world
Numerous hydrogen storage systems fitted with Dynecell cylinders and valves are operating around the globe. Luxfer provided 30 Dynecell cylinders for Citaro fuel cell transit buses operating throughout Europe as part of the Clean Urban Transport for Europe (CUTE) project. Dynecell cylinders were also used on 40 hydrogen powered commuter buses during the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver and the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. In the automotive sector, world class OEMs including Hyundai, Ford Motor Company, Daimler and Nissan use Dynecell cylinders.
Mobile hydrogen refueling system
Dynecell cylinders are being used for mobile refueling systems that provide “instant infrastructure” by making compressed hydrogen immediately accessible to end users. The operating pressures of these systems are 5,076 psi (350 bar) and 10.153 psi (700 bar), making them ideal for:
- Fuel cell vehicle demonstrations.
- Resupplying stationary hydrogen refueling stations.
- Refueling remote hydrogen fuel cell applications and sites.
To learn more about our about our natural gas storage systems please visit http://www.luxfercylinders.com/products/alternative-fuel-cylinders
Our partner Luxfer-GTM Technologies has just introduced the the ZeroSet - Generation 3 Zero Emission Portable Generator.
The ZeroSet - Generation 3 dramatically reduces equipment footprint and increases mobility while continuing to provide zero-emission, ultra-quiet electrical energy. The ZeroSet - Gen 3 uses 350bar (5,000psig) composite cylinders that allows users the flexibility to refill the unit at the many hydrogen fueling stations currently operating and the 28 planned hydrogen filling stations in California and New York.
The Generation 3 is the only portable, zero emission power generator on the market capable of run times of almost five (5) days (@50% duty cycle), 24x7 operation. The ZeroSet - Gen 3 provides clean, almost whisper quiet, energy for a diverse range of applications extending from back-up power for critical electronic infrastructure to primary power for movies sets and portable cell tower deployments.
See more at: http://www.luxfergtm.com/zeroset-generation-3.html
Gas Transportation Modules
Luxfer-GTM Technologies has designed a complete line of Gas Transportation Modules or GTMs for the storage and transportation of compressed gases. Configured around lightweight, Type III composite cylinders, our GTM products can store gases up to 3600 psi (248 bar). GTMs can be configured for placement into a wide variety of packages, including standard shipping containers, small trailers, pods or racks for small trucks.
There are many possible configurations. The majority of our GTMs use a cylinder with a 15.9 inch (40.4 cm) diameter that can be configured in rows of up to 6 cylinders. A 10′ pod uses a 108 inch (274.3 cm) long cylinder in 5 cylinders across by 6 cylinders high (or 5×6). A 20 foot ISO container is 5x6x2. A small truck, however, may use the 120 inch (304.8 cm) long tube in a 4×3 or 4×4 configuration.
In the US, Luxfer-GTM manufactures systems with cylinders approved for use under Special Permit 15136 issued by the US Dept. of Transportation. We also use cylinders that meet the requirements of ANSI/CSA NGV 2, US DOT FMVSS 304, CAN/CSA B51, TC 301.2, METI-KHK, ISO 11439 and ECE R110. The cylinders have also been approved for storage and transportation of CNG in Australia, Japan, Indonesia, Mexico and Vietnam. In addition, Transport Canada has approved our GTMs for domestic use as well.
See more at: http://www.luxfergtm.com
Superforming Titanium alloy 6AL4V
Superform USA, the leader in Superforming complex sheet metal components, is now forming titanium alloy 6AL4V.
The part pictured is a titanium firewall used in a business jet engine application. The use of lightweight titanium is an excellent choice for materials used in “hot” areas of airframe engines and exhausts.
The addition of titanium Superforming capability complements our existing forming capability in Aluminum and Magnesium alloys.
Superform’s advanced titanium forming process brings numerous benefits to part design to provide superior titanium components.
Superformed titanium forming yields stress-free components.
Flexibility in tool design allows integrated structures providing the opportunity to combine multiple pieces into one formed part.
Strengthening features can be designed and formed into parts for more structurally efficient components.
High quality surface finish.
Superior adherence to profile tolerances.
Thickness range from 0.015” to 0.250”.
Additional Titanium parts services include welding, machining, mechanical trimming, laser trimming and assembly.
For more information please go to www.superforming.com