Hydro Wins Automotive Award for Magnesium Engine Cradle for Corvette

The benchmark-setting magnesium engine cradle for the Chevrolet Corvette Z06, manufactured by Hydro's joint venture Meridian Technologies Inc., has been honored by Automotive News.

The component, cast as a single piece with metal from Hydro Magnesium, has won honorable mention in Automotive News' 2006 Premier Automotive Supplier's Contribution to Excellence Award (PACE). These awards recognize innovation in the automotive supply world.

The magazine's editors claim that, given the high caliber of applications, the honorable mention shows true distinction: "You ... are recognized as exceptional contributors to innovation in the automotive industry."

Hydro's submission was for the engine cradle produced with the company's new high-temperature alloy, AE44. The patented alloy contributed to the solution, explains Hydro's Lisabeth Riopelle. "This exciting new application would not have been possible without Hydro's research into new alloys," she says.

"The AE44 alloy is one of a family of alloys that can shorten product development time while providing good elongation properties, increased yield strength and better casting performance."

Compared to its aluminium predecessor, the 10.85-kilogram magnesium engine cradle provides mass savings of 30 to 35 percent.

"The magnesium engine cradle is a breakthrough as a structural bearing component," says executive director Mike Meloeny of Chassis/Powertrain for GM.

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