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2019 Fall Conference - Aluminum Anodizers Council - Program
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Annual Anodizing Conference Program

This year's 28th Annual Anodizing Conference & Exposition programming delivers industry-focused information and education, giving anodizers the tools and know-how to make well-informed decisions. Program topics range from business information to industry analysis that will help you gain technical insight, develop industry relationships, and achieve a higher level of understanding in the aluminum finishing world. Outlined below are the educational programs you will find at this year's conference.


8:00 – 8:40 a.m.
AAC Chairman's Welcome, AAC Annual Meeting and Business Report

Todd Hamilton, Southern Aluminum Finishing

Details coming soon.

10:25 – 11:10 a.m.

Design of Anodized Aluminum Parts for Functional and Decorative Purposes in the Branded Car Stereo Business

Mikkel Venge, Huemen

Branded audio systems have become an important way to upgrade cars in the premium/luxury segment; aluminum is one of the preferred speaker grill materials. For 10+ years, I have explored Bang & Olufsen's brand and aluminum competencies in an automotive context. How aluminum’s practical qualities and aesthetic characteristics go hand in hand to create valuable items is presented: material understanding and attention to detail showcased through various surface treatments, gloss levels and anodization finishes; industrial craftsmanship carried out in extruding, machining and forming of aluminum to fulfill the design intention. Prize-winning designs made possible through multidisciplinary teamwork are highlighted.

11:10 – 11:55 a.m.

Recent Development in Aluminum Application for Lightweight Car Design
Juergen Hirsch, Hydro Aluminum

Aluminum for automobile applications and in lightweight design is clearly the best-suited material over high-strength steels. Recent research and development activities are presented in aluminum alloy variants like new non-heat-treatable 5xxx alloys and age-hardenable 6xxx and 7xxx alloy variants, with improved strength, formability, corrosion resistance, and surface appearance. Innovative processing technologies like hot-forming, including press hardening or additive manufacturing, are addressed. The economic and ecological aspects outlined confirm aluminum’s important role and great future in modern lightweight car design for body-in-white, chassis, and structural and engine applications.

Architectural - Wednesday, OCTOBER 2, 2019

1:10 – 2:00 p.m.

A History of Anodizing
Richard W. Mahn, Richard Mahn Technical Services, LLC

Of all the known industrial metals, aluminum has the shortest history - less than 150 years as a commercially available metal, and less than 100 years as a finishable metal. This presentation will recount some highlights of aluminum's anodizing history.

2:10 - 3:00 p.m.

Effect of Ni-Based Electro-Coloring Additives on Color Shade, Color Reproducibility and Process Control
Can Akyil, Istanbul Technical University

Positive attributes of Ni-based electrocoloring additives are illustrated for better color stability and increased reproducibility. Slowing the electrocoloring process with nickel-based technology enables color shades produced with a highly in-demand stainless steel appearance. Color samples produced using different process parameters and coloring additives are measured using a color spectrophotometer to quantify color shade, stability and process control. The resulting AAO’s morphological features affecting color stability are investigated using optical microscopy and SEM analysis. Test data is presented to determine the nickel-based electrocoloring resulting AAO layer’s chemical and mechanical properties including neutral salt spray, acidic dissolution, and hardness.

3:10 - 4:00 p.m.

Nickel-Free Room Temperature Sealing and Alkali-Resistant Sealing for Anodized Aluminum: Latest Developments 
Dr. Marcello Rossi, Fabio Vincenzi, Alberto Brandoli, Walter Dalla Barba, Italtecno Srl

During last year’s two new innovative sealing processes for anodized aluminium have been developed: the first one is the long waited nickel free seal.

The second one is an especially requested seal by the automotive market, but suitable also for many other applications (including architectural, furniture, decorative and mechanical applications) resistant also to alkali according to designed specific tests of automotive standards; in the following experimental part the two seal processes will be described in details

4:10 – 5:00 p.m.

How Do You Make Lightfast Anodizing?
Pinakin Patel, Techevon LLC

The various colors that are available to produce lightfast and weatherfast anodic coatings are discussed. Special emphasis is given to black dyes, since that represents a large portion of the market. Detailed evaluation is presented to show the effect of different anodizing conditions, dyeing times, coating thickness, and effect of contaminants in dye baths. The effect of sealing methods is shown to help identify the best sealing system. All of the coatings will be evaluated using accelerated exposure to a Xenon light source to simulate actual outdoor exposure.


1:10 – 2:00 p.m.

Anodizing Voltage vs. Current Density 
George Oh and Nathan Sheffield, Houghton Metal Finishing

Changes in current density and voltage over the course of anodizing affect the anodized aluminum pore microstructure, albeit in different ways.  In this study we compare anodization while holding current density constant vs holding voltage constant, and evaluate the effects on benchmark parameters such as coating thickness, coating weight, and ADTs, as well as their effects on other steps in the process such as coloring.

2:10 – 3:00 p.m.

Why Pulse Anodizing?
Anne Deacon Juhl, AluConsult

The pulse anodizing process has been used for many years now. There continues to be many issues and prejudices about this subject. Universities and industry are still interested in figuring out whether or not this advanced approach towards a very mature process works or not. Therefore, this presentation explains why pulse anodizing should be introduced into your existing or new anodizing line. Three main reasons for utilizing pulse anodizing are examined: 1) Easier to reach a uniform and decorative layer on alloyed aluminum, for example, recycled; 2) Decreased energy consumption; and 3) Increased productivity.

3:10 – 4:00 p.m.

Cosmetic and Functional Hard Coat
Tej Patel, Techevon LLC  

This presentation discusses the types of hard coat anodizing, modified and conventional, and how each can be used for functional benefits for anodized applications. We will also discuss the ability to enhance the cosmetic appeal of hard coat anodizing and what techniques/factors should be considered, as follows: alloy type; coating density/porosity; coating thickness; dye selection; lightfastness/weatherfastness; and the sealing process. An overview is presented of the various industry applications where both functional and cosmetic requirements are needed, as it relates to hard coat anodizing.

4:10 - 5:00 p.m.

Beyond Aluminum; Anodization of Transition Metals
Wojciech J. Stępniowski, Lehigh University

Anodization of aluminum provides hexagonally-arranged nanoporous morphology of amorphous alumina. Such material provides corrosion protection and improved adhesion, and benefits in nanofabrication as a template material. Research is presented on anodization of Ti, Zr, Cu, and alloys including TiAl and FeAl intermetallic. Anodization of Ti allows the obtaining of  nanotubular or nanoporous morphology of amorphous titania, beneficial as implant material, photocatalyst, and a key element in dye-sensitized solar cells. Anodization of copper allows obtaining of nanowires and nanoneedles, composed of crystalline Cu2O and CuO. Such nanostructures are catalysts for carbon dioxide reduction reaction into hydrocarbons and their derivatives.


1:10 – 2:00 p.m.

Using Spectrometers for Color Analysis on Anodized Aluminum
Sara Merrick-Albano, Covit America  

Color spectrometers are a powerful tool used in the paint and print industry, but what happens when this technology is applied to anodized aluminum? With variations from alloy, finish, and dye, anodized aluminum presents a challenge to spectrometers that can be overcome when the limitations and variables are understood. As cosmetic anodizers, we have successfully used spectrometers for color matching, color analysis, and in-process quality control, and these experiences will be discussed.

2:10 – 3:00 p.m.

The Systemic Resolution of Bright Dip Problems
Melvin Todd, Fang Phos, Inc.

The primary theme of this presentation is to identify typical problems encountered in the bright dip process. Strategies that may be employed to resolve difficulties such as pitting, transfer etch, grainy metal, and others are discussed. The role that extrusion practices and the aluminum microstructure play in generating bright dip defects are considered. The bright dip bath chemistry is also examined as a potential source of numerous metal finishing problems. These defects will be discussed in detail.

3:10 - 4:00 p.m.

Pulse Chemistry Procedures
Fred Schaedel, Alpha Plus Systems Affiliate of Alpha Process

Actual anodic pulse chemistry procedures are presented for commercial and aerospace anodizing.  This electrochemical pulse technology provides maximized efficiency along with total quality improvement.  The advantages of pulse chemistry are discussed in the following situations: 1) when anodizing difficult alloys; 2) where masking and cathodes are critical issues; and 3) how data logger graphs are used in actual production runs, including aircraft landing gears and helicopter rotor blades.

4:10 - 5:00 p.m.

Practical and Effective Test Methods for Managing Organic Dye Baths in Anodizing Job Shops
Chris Ebbrecht, GetColored, Inc.  

Anodizing shops often rely on their suppliers for information about their organic dye tanks, often requiring lab testing and corrective action.This time-consuming process cause significant delays, reductions in process efficiency and increases in turnaround time for customers. Practical and effective test methods for testing dye baths are presented, along with visual test methods for quick solution management. Easy test methods with minimal equipment investment are provided. Strategies for approaching a troubled organic dye bath are outlined. This paper gives the anodizing shop the ability to make decisions in real time. Anodizers are educated to effectively manage their own chemistry. 


8:30 – 9:15 a.m.

Update on the Aluminum Markets
Greg Whittbecker, CRU  

CRU’s current views on primary aluminum supply and demand and the impact of scrap substitution are provided. CRU’s latest perspective and analysis on U.S. trade actions are presented, and how these actions are impacting broad segments of the supply chain.

9:15 – 10:00 a.m.

Producing Quality Aluminum Billet for Extrusion
Dave Salee, Wagstaff

Extruded aluminum products require high-quality raw material in order to deliver the highest quality product to the market. Understanding DC cast aluminum billet production leads to understanding the potential quality implications inherent to the DC casting process that may directly impact the extrusion process, and downstream processing such as anodizing, forging, ring rolling, etc. Reviewing the aluminum source and various processing steps that deliver billet to extruders provides a more complete understanding of issues affecting extruded product quality. This allows extruders to be more selective and empowers them to evaluate potential billet suppliers to achieve premium quality extrusion products.

10:15 - 11:00 a.m.

Global Anodizing Dye Perspective - Navigating the Dynamic Supply
Randy Yorston, Organic Dyes and Pigments LLC  

Organic dyes have been used to color anodic films for over 75 years. The global marketplace and shifting global markets have changed this landscape. There are more quality suppliers of organic dyes with their products available on a global basis. The amount of quality organic colorants is growing. Concurrently, the enviromental pressures in countries worldwide have also increased. There has been similar pressure on the intermediate chemistry used to manufacture these organic colorants. U.S.-imposed tariffs have shifted interest in sourcing dyes and colorants from several countries. These changes and their implications for the anodizer using organic dyes is presented. 

11:00 - 11:45 a.m.

Keeping Your Safety Message Alive!
Kelly Miller, Bonnell Aluminum  

Necessary… Yes, Easy… No, Boring…Can be.  Join me for some creative ways to get your safety message to be heard and remembered.