Steel's role in truck design is profiled in a segment of the new educational television series, "Pulse on America," according to an announcement by the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) and its partner, New Line Media Solutions. The segment, "The Future of Automotive Design" produced by Platinum Television Group, will be airing on CNBC-TV affiliates nationwide.
AISI has introduced innovative steel technologies into vehicle design through different initiatives, including the ULSAB-Advanced Vehicle Concepts (ULSAB-AVC) program, which was a proactive, global steel-intensive initiative to respond to the automotive customer's need for affordable, fuel-efficient vehicle design. Project IMPACT (Improved Materials and Powertrain Architectures for 21st Century Trucks), which was conducted by the U.S. Department of Defense investment-in-partnership with AISI and Ford Motor Company to develop the next generation of light- and medium- duty trucks, successfully reduced weight, enhanced performance, improved mobility and increased fuel economy of tactical trucks.
Current projects with AISI, the Auto/Steel Partnership, and the U.S. Department of Energy explore the use of advanced high-strength steels for future FreedomCAR applications where weight reduction is a prime objective.
Despite intense material competition, steel content in an average 2005 light vehicle (passenger cars and light trucks) is 64 percent. The development and use of high-strength and advanced high-strength steels are keeping steel the preferred choice against aluminum, composites, and cast iron competitors. Because these next-generation steels are lighter and stronger than their predecessors, they are being introduced into current market designs for body structures, closures, suspensions, crankshafts, steering knuckles, and other key components. Steel solutions for future vehicles have proven to be the most affordable year after year.