Economics of Aluminum Extrusion for Aerospace Applications
Pradip K. Saha, The Boeing Company, Chicago, Illinois, USA
Track: MANAGEMENT ISSUES - Markets and Applications
ABSTRACT—A number of variables are involved in determining the cost of manufacturing aluminum
extrusions. Beside the initial cost of the extrusion billet, extrusion die and tooling, costs range from
moderate to high. The variation in cost depends mainly on the alloy to be extruded, type of extrusion, and
the extrusion geometry. Cost models were developed at various stages of operations, starting at initial
billet casting to the final extrusion process, followed by post processing. Post-processing operations will
include heat treatment, stretching, straightening, detwisting, mechanical testing and more, for aerospace
applications. This paper will address the relationship between the cost models at various stages of the
extrusion process, in order to better understand the economics of producing extrusions in a highly
competitive global business market. Continuous process improvements and optimization of process
variables at each stage of operations to improve the extrusion quality, productivity, and finally, extrusion
cost, will also be discussed.
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