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Research shifts gears in growth for world's leading suppliers

Innovative research on using niobium as a grain refiner for casting aluminium alloys delivers solutions for aerospace and automotive industry

The need

CBMM, the largest producer of ferroniobium (a form of niobium) supplying 70% of the global market, wanted to realise its business strategy and expedite market growth by broadening its focus from predominantly steel to aluminium. Grainger & Worrall, the largest specialist prototype aluminium foundry in Europe, were also looking to strengthen their position in the European/Worldwide lightweight casting market.

They saw Prof Nadendla’s research as providing solutions for the technical and financial challenges that the current adoption of large aluminium alloy casting presents for the automotive industry.

The solution

Having been significantly influenced by Prof Nadendla’s research, CBMM  wanted to commercialise and make the first sale of niobium as a grain refiner in casting aluminium to tackle the technical and financial challenges that the current adoption of large aluminium alloy casting presents for the automotive industry. 

The outcome

  • CBMM recorded 55% higher sales than the previous year – net revenue of R$7,4bn (equivalent to £1,34bn), corresponding to a 69% jump in net profits’ 
  • A new dedicated team within CBMM Aluminium Programme with 5 offices and 60 staff worldwide
  • Grainger & Worrall streamlined the manufacturing process and reduced metal waste, with a significant reduction in their energy and carbon footprint.

Partnering with confidence

Organisations interested in our research can partner with us with confidence backed by an external and independent benchmark: The Knowledge Exchange Framework. Read more.

Case study last modified 14/10/2022

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