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Alcoa and Yutong Bus Co. Enter Bus Partnership; Light-Weight Prototypes Targeted for Beijing Olympics

The partners hope to achieve a 15-20% reduction in weight from design and advanced manufacturing technologies. Click to enlarge.

Alcoa and Zhengzhou Yutong Bus Company, Ltd have formed a partnership to develop and to manufacture a new generation of aluminum-intensive, lighter-weight, fuel-efficient buses for China. The partners anticipate having prototypes of their first joint bus project ready in time for the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing.

Zhengzhou Yutong Bus Company is China’s largest bus manufacturer and the number two producer in the world.

The partnership between Yutong Bus and Alcoa on the new sustainable bus demonstrates long-term commitment to the support of our government’s policy to build mass transportation vehicles in harmony with society&mash;people and the environment. We realize that reducing the weight of tomorrow’s short- and long-range buses will be essential for improving their sustainability, and that the intelligent application of aluminum is one of best methods possible to achieve such mass reduction.

—Tang Yuxiang, Chairman and Chief Executive of Zhengzhou Yutong

A recent study by the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research (Institut für Energie- und Umweltforschung, IFEU) in Heidelberg, Germany, which was presented last month at the 2007 China Aluminum and Transportation Conference in Dalian, found that a weight reduction of 100 kg in a diesel-powered city bus making several stops will save 2,550 liters of fuel and significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions over its lifetime.

Jinya Chen, Alcoa’s President for the Asia-Pacific Region, said that one goal of the partnership is to achieve significantly more than a 100kg weight reduction per vehicle.

Our companies believe that through the combination of aluminum spaceframe design and advanced manufacturing technologies, we can achieve 15 to 20 percent weight reductions while maintaining the safety and enhancing the sustainability performance of a new family of buses.

—Jinya Chen

Alcoa has been a leader in the development and integration of advanced aluminum alloys, vehicle structural design and advanced joining and assembly technologies for more than two decades. The company produces cast and extruded components for the Audi A8 aluminum space frame (ASF) in Germany and manufactures aluminum spaceframes for all Ferrari Gran Turismo vehicles in Italy.

The IFEU study noted that lightweighting the world’s transportation fleet— passenger cars, trucks, rail vehicles, air and sea craft—has the potential of reducing GHG emissions by 660 million tons annually, or close to 9% of global, transportation-related GHG emissions. Reductions of approximately 870 million tonnes are possible with advanced designs, according to the study.




Having lived though the Olympics here in Atlanta in 1996, let me offer a word of advice to the Chinese: do NOT use prototype ANYTHING during the Olympics.


Having been through the 1996 Olympics here in Atlanta, allow me to offer a word of advice to the Chinese: don't bring your prototype ANYTHING to the Olympics, except as a static display.


Confess that I've been v. disappointed with bus & large vehicle loss of weight over the decades in the U.S. However, safety considerations really has worked to keep weights up. Maybe Alcoa will experiment with light weight large vehicles in less safety strapped China to see if high MPG light weight vehicles can be made safe too.

Aluminium is not less safe than steel. It is only more expensive and more difficult to weld.That's why it isn't used more often. Hope this changes soon.

Paul Dietz

Also, durability issues have kept weight up. Remember what happened to the 870 frame Flxible buses in NY City?

tom deplume

American public transit buses have used aluminum and fiberglass body parts for decades. The problem those Flxibles had was with a subframe which supported the powertrain wasn't strong enough to handle pothole ridden streets.

Dr Paul Nyame


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I got your contact from Ghana chamber of commerce.

I am Dr Paul Nyame from Ghana,an industrialist and international business man who have make name in business.

Sir right now i have a business proposal for you,the government of Ghana is about selling the aluminum and iron scarabs rating over 2 million tons that have being kept for about 3 years now.

Initially the aluminum and the iron scarabs is being kept for recircling,but since the company handling the construction and building of metal company of Ghana have failed to meet up to the dead line giving for the company to commence.

So the government have map out the land where the scarabs have being kept to be use for building of Ghana autra modern hospital,that is the reason why they want to sell off the scarab out so that they can make use of the land.

The minister of commerce whose this is under his ministry,appointed me to handle the selling of the scarabs.

i write to you now if you are interested,reply to me urgently through the above email address.

The other information and details will be clarified to you in replying your responds.

Dr Paul Nyame.

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