Novelis Inc., a leading sustainable aluminum solutions provider and the world leader in aluminum rolling and recycling, today announced the start up of its new roll forming development line. The new development line will help Novelis meet industry demand for a process that can produce large volumes of high-strength aluminum auto parts.
Located at the company’s Automotive Customer Solution Center in Novi, Michigan, a suburb of Metro Detroit, the new state-of-the-art roll forming development line will provide Novelis with the unique advantage of conducting full scope, year-round research and development on roll forming in house. The round-the-clock access to the line will facilitate unmatched innovation and expedite the process to ensure complex, high-strength aluminum roll forming is developed, and process robustness is proven more swiftly.
As the automotive industry moves toward electrification, it is demanding faster production of lighter, greener parts. With the roll forming process, strips of aluminum are incrementally formed in a continuous fashion to form a desired shape having various degrees of detail and strength. Offering a process that is scalable and customizable, aluminum roll forming provides significant opportunities for production of high strength aluminum at scale. While roll forming is not new to the industry, its ability to produce complex high strength aluminum parts has yet to be fully developed and will require innovation and investment to maximize its potential.
Novelis’ introduction of its own roll forming development line is a critical step to moving the technology forward. The shift to the mass production of aluminum-intensive vehicles is a natural next step as the industry prioritizes electrification and sustainability, as well as other benefits of aluminum, such as increased safety, reduced risk of corrosion and improved performance.
“The auto industry understands the benefits of aluminum and is looking to Novelis to develop technology that supports their growth initiatives,” said Jamie Zinser, Vice President, Global Automotive, Novelis Inc. “One of these technologies is roll forming. We are introducing this development line to accelerate research and development, not to become a roll forming company. Our goal is to work with our automotive and Tier I partners to innovate and develop aluminum sheet technology that will support the electrification movement.”
Novelis is the first flat-rolled aluminum company to invest in its own roll forming development line, which demonstrates its commitment to innovation and developing new technologies that will swiftly bring the weight, sustainability and cost benefits of high-strength aluminum to the automotive market on a mass scale.
Xavier Varone, Global Technology Director, Automotive, Novelis Inc., said: “This investment demonstrates Novelis’ commitment to delivering innovation that ensures aluminum meets the growing demands of the auto industry.”