Mr. Frank Busenbecker, Commercial Managing Director of Erbslöh Aluminium GmbH
Q: Please introduce yourself – who you are, what your responsibilities are at Erbslöh Aluminium GmbH?
A: My name is Frank Busenbecker and I’m the Commercial Managing Director of Erbslöh Aluminium GmbH. My colleague, Norbert-William Sucke, who is responsible for all technical affairs, and me are wholly responsible for the business success of this part of the WKW-group.
Q: Could you give us a quick overview of Erbslöh Aluminium GmbH?
A: Erbslöh Aluminium GmbH combines the competence gained in handling the sophisticated material Aluminium from the early phases of aluminium processing with modern management methods: Since its foundation in 2001, this company represents the development, production and distribution of extruded aluminium profiles for automotive and industrial applications.
Press equipment consisting of six hydraulically operated extruders with a pressing force of 12,5 MN to 44 MN meets our customers’ challenging requirements. Our product spectrum covers:
- Semi-finished products for automotive suppliers
- Decorative profiles for sanitary equipment and furniture accessories
- Decorative and functional parts for consumer electronics
- Profiles for manufacturing of heat exchangers
- Embossed aluminum sheets
The two in-house high purity alloy melting plant, which processes e.g. ultra-pure aluminum alloys into round bars, deserves special attention. The resulting semi-finished products – in form of ALMINOX® profiles – enjoy highest reputation worldwide.
Q: Has your company always been involved in the automotive sector?
A: When it comes to combining design components with functional parts requirements, aluminum material is plainly the ideal solution. Thus, the material is used for semi-finished profiles nearly in all industrial areas. Of course, our roots lie in the automotive sector, especially for decorative moldings and roof strips, panels, window guides – even for complete greenhouse solutions -, hood components as well as roof railing systems.
Our group WKW.automotive offers the complete program – from material alloy to molding and extruding of semi-finished products all the way to mechanical processing and surface finishing. Further, highly complex extrusion processes are applied in the production of heat exchangers. Our specialties include filigree micro multiports, as well as the large volume cross-section of multiport profiles.
In the industrial design-oriented product areas of Erbslöh Aluminium GmbH, like sanitary equipment and furniture accessories, or consumer electronics, it is inconceivable to do without applications made of aluminium, often also of ALMINOX®. High functionality, together with a flawless surface appearance is an unbeatable argument in favour of our material.
Q: Looking to the future, where do you think the aluminium industry as a whole, and the automotive sector are headed?
A: Aluminium is still a young and modern metal. It has only been produced on an industrial scale since 1886, when Hall and Héroult independently discovered how to produce aluminium through electrolysis. In 1900 annual output of aluminium was one thousand tonnes. By the end of the twentieth century annual production had reached 32 million tonnes, comprising 24 million tonnes of primary aluminium and 8 million tonnes from recycled metal. This makes aluminium the world’s second most used metal, and this trend is constantly continuing.
Aluminium makes not only a key contribution to fuel-efficient engines in cars, but is an indispensable element of the design of premium automobiles. Further, by reducing the vehicles’ weight, it cuts down on fuel consumption and emissions, without compromising the size or the safety of the vehicles.
Q: What developing trend, idea or technology makes you most excited or hopeful for the future?
A: The manufacturers of vehicles and their suppliers are seeking to reduce the environmental impacts caused by transport. The aluminium industry helps to meet this challenge with its contribution to light-weighting, improved performance and to improved safety. Different life-cycle assessments have shown that 1 kg of aluminium in a car body, replacing 2 kg of steel in a conventional car body, saves, during the life-time of the car, about 20 kg of greenhouse gas emissions. Since aluminium has a high strength to weight ratio, vehicles designed to use aluminium components can achieve the benefits of light-weighting without reducing the safety of the passengers or the performance of the vehicle. For the first decade of this millennium the use of aluminium in cars is predicted to double because of more cars world-wide and more aluminium in cars.
Every time aluminium is used nowadays it is dependent on luxury strategies. As mentioned before, for automobiles this applies also to reducing the weight of the vehicle, and to the higher articulate power and aesthetic distinctiveness achieved when using aluminium for internal and external surface design.
Of course, these key factors will influence our presentation at the ALUMINUM 2012. The detailed planning of our stand, inclusive the choice which innovations will be shown there, is moving into a crucial phase in the first quarter of the year. Only so much shall betrayed: ALMINOX® will be in the center of our presentation.
For Erbslöh Aluminium GmbH the ALUMINIUM is the leading exhibition. We expect an increasing number of visitors, of course the vast majority our present and hopefully future customers.