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World Foundry Congress focuses on environmental control, reuse.

Metalcasting executives hear latest waste control and operations technologies that favor energy conservation, materials recycling.

With the theme, "Foundry and Environment," the 59th World Foundry Congress on September 20-25 in Sao Paulo, Brazil, emphasized the international effort by the metalcasting industry to curb environmental pollution problems.

The annual event, held under the auspices of the International Committee of Foundry Technical Associations (CIATF), was organized by the Brazilian Foundry Assn. The congress is concurrent with the United Nations' Conference on Environment and Development and is a parallel effort by the foundry industry to reduce waste.

Nearly 500 foundry industry executives and guests from 32 countries attended the congress, including 44 from the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Among the official U.S. delegates were Ray Witt, American Foundrymen's Society president, and Eckhart Grohmann, former AFS director. Dario Rivera, president of the Mexican Foundrymen's Society, represented his country.

Past presidents of AFS attending were Bernard Ames, George Booth, Anton (Tony) Dorfmueller, Jr., Charles Fausel and R. Conner Warren.

The work of this congress was to firmly establish the foundry industry as a world leader in efforts to protect the earth's ecosystem.

The program of the Brazilian meeting was aimed at helping foundries recognize and eliminate areas of potential environmental harm. Sharing the same concerns as the U.N. conference, the congress focused on identifying environmental protection methods and materials required in a model, pollution-free foundry.

Technical sessions and the unique technical forum and video corners provided ample evidence of an industry taking responsibility for its share of protecting the environment and using its own resources to adapt its operations to the "green revolution."

According to Czechslovakia's Karel Rusin, CITAF president and congress keynote speaker, "Environmental problems long have been regarded as simply cleaning up at the 'end of the pipe.' This strategy is certainly justifiable and will be continued, but new approaches developed by the organization's world commission on environmental development, chaired by Gro Harlem Brundtland, have emerged. These developments are based on the realization that the ultimate reversal of progressive environmental degradation must be based on the reduction or elimination of the causes of pollution.

"The commission uses the slogan, 'Producing More With Less.' This means analyzing the environmental impact of all energy, materials and processes involved in metalcasting and resolving at their source any use and disposal problems inherent in each.

"An important observation is that the 'end of the pipe' strategy always costs money, but new approaches to process control and materials reuse have the potential eventually to lower costs through energy savings, materials conservation and lower capital investment."

International Exchange Paper

The official U.S. exchange paper, "Alternative Utilization of Foundry Waste Sand," opened the congress' technical sessions. Its leadoff position is indicative of the sand disposal and reuse problems faced by foundries worldwide.

The paper, coauthored by consultant R. Todd Burnley, reviewed the results of an AFS research project and was presented by Daniel Twarog, AFS director of research. Twarog detailed the extensive work done by AFS and several foundries (in conjunction with the state of Illinois) to discover practical reuses for the varieties of expended casting sands to counteract rising disposal costs.

He cited cement, concrete, smelting flux cover, asphalt, rock wool and land fill as acceptable reuse targets based on the AFS research findings.

Points in his presentation that drew comment and discussion included:

* foundries with more than one molding line or multiple waste streams should keep waste streams separate to maintain consistent properties for specific reuse applications;

* the leach potential for most foundry waste sand from core room, molding and shakeout operations is negligible, but foundries are encouraged to verify this conclusion by frequently leach testing their sand waste streams;

* the markets for high- and low-grade sand reuse applications are large enough to absorb all foundry waste sands available.

Twenty-four technical papers from 17 countries were presented, while 10 papers comprised the technical forum. Thomas Prucha of CMI International chaired one of the forum sessions.

Additional technical paper presentations from the U.S. were:

* "Technical and Economic Considerations of Reclaiming Foundry Sands," presented by Charles Fausel and co-authored by D. Kennedy and C. Linne, Lester B. Knight Cast Metals, Inc.;

* "Identification and Control of Core and Molding Emissions from Metalcasting Operations," presented by James Archibald and coauthored by G. Allen and W. Tordoff, Ashland Chemical, Inc.

At the closing of the congress, Luis Montenegro Chavez Filho, governor of the state of Sao Paulo and honorary congress president and vice chairman of the event's organizing committee, thanked the committee for its contributions. He also discussed the economic importance of the metalworking industries in Brazil.

CIATF President Rusin announced the approval of future congress sites (Table 1) and the decision of the organization's officers to ratify new memberships for Canada and Mexico.

The affiliation of the Slovenian Foundrymen's Assn. was approved and provisional affiliation was extended to Ukraine, pending fulfillment of certain stipulations.

Fifteen CIATF commissions are active in various fields of foundry technology, including two new ones dealing with light alloy and expendable pattern castings, Rusin said. The working group within the Environmental Commission 4 is researching the environmental effects of resin-bonded sand systems and will begin its investigations shortly, he added.

The following representatives to the executive of CIATF for 1993 were elected: president, Y. Zhou. China; vice president, S. Commissariat, India; treasurer, W. Matejka, Japan; and secretary-general, G. Gerter, Switzerland.

The 59th CIATF meeting was adjourned with the official flag presented to the representatives from Holland, site of the 60th CIATF World Foundry Congress.
Table 1. Future World Foundry Congress Sites and Dates.
60th WFC, The Hague, Netherlands
September 26-October 1, 1993
No congress in 1994; annual meeting during GIFA, Dusseldorf,
June 18, 1994
61st WFC, Beijing, People's Republic of China
September 3-8, 1995
62nd WFC, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
April 24-28, 1996.

World Recession Hits Brazil's Foundry Industry

Brazil's foundry industry, ranked eighth in the world, has been hit heavily by the current world recession.

In 1980, Brazil had 1533 foundries employing 86,300 workers to produce 1.8 million tons of castings. By 1991, the number had slid to 1011 foundries, with 54,000 workers to produce 1.4 million tons of castings.

Iron represents 85% of the total casting produced. Steel castings plummeted from 164,000 tons in 1980 to 86,000 in 1991.

During the past decade, nonferrous castings have fared better overall, rising from 123,000 tons in 1980 to 130,000 in 1989 before settling back to 113,000 tons in 1991.

Aluminum showed the best performance in this period, increasing from 63,000 tons to 72,400 tons.

Brazilian cast parts exports have been small, representing 4% in 1980 and rising to 11% in 1991.
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Title Annotation:includes sidebar on Brazil's foundry industry; 59th World Foundry Congress
Author:Dorfmueller, Anton, Jr.
Publication:Modern Casting
Date:Dec 1, 1992
Previous Article:North American Free Trade Agreement: A perspective from Mexico.
Next Article:26th Census of World Casting Production--1991.

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