May 2023 Volume 5
Official Publication of the Forging Industry Association
Automation& Material Handling Digital Twins A New Tool in the Forger’s Kit Page 26
Automated Die Lubrication in Forging Applications Page 32 Before Automation…Things to Consider Page 34 Recommended Practices for Robot and Cell Programming Page 42
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Shows Are Back The FIA Staff is excited to welcome the industry back to Forge Fair 2023. As this magazine reaches you, we’re still taking reservations for booths and expect an improved attendance compared to Forge Fair 2021 (Detroit) which took place during the difficult recovery from the pandemic. Our peer shows (casting, fabricating, steel) are also reporting higher attendance and booth sales this year. So, what can you expect at this year’s Forge Fair? So much! More than 130 exhibitor booths, dozens of technical and ‘101’ presentations, and a new mobile show app for connecting to one another all await you. Plus, our new FIERF Forging Competition (10 schools competing) along with an appearance from ‘Forged in Fire’ star Ben Abbott happening on ‘Career Day’ (Thursday). Our economist, Chris Kuehl, will be present to discuss what the rest of the year is shaping up to be. Please stop by the FIA-FIERF booth #219 to say hello to the staff, grab a coffee, or even jump into our mini-studio to provide a testimonial on what it means to be an FIA member! Next Steps in Fair Trade With the recent efforts of our lobby firm and several members during FIA Lobby Day 2023 (Trenton Forging, Scot Forge, Weber Metals, Ellwood Group), FIA has now had two meetings with White House staff related to fair trade and ‘Buy American’ rules enforcement. It is now time to act on what we have learned. FIA has reengaged its trade attorney firm Cassidy Levy Kent (Tom Beline and Myles Getlan). FIA’s Fluid End Block Coalition (2020) – led by Cassidy Levy Kent -- was successful at getting significant tariffs levied on several companies across multiple countries. The action at hand includes: • Member survey of interest on an anti-dumping or countervailing duties (AD/CVD) strategy – agreeing on common forged components most dumped justifying a trade case. • Meetings with members – counseling on pooled member investment necessary to go forward with an AD/CVD case. • Trade attorney webinar sponsored by FIA to discuss remedies available to the membership and how using the e-allegations program to report trade violations (U.S. Customs and Border Protection). President's Note
• Confidential survey of member financials demonstrating the unfair trading damage done – a key component for successful AD/CVD cases. • Presentations at upcoming meetings and articles for FIA Magazine • Meetings at USTR, Commerce Department You will be seeing more of Tom and Myles soon, and we look forward to advocating with them for legal remedies to stop unfair trading. Please reach out to me if you’d like to discuss any of this: firstname.lastname@example.org or 216-781-6260. Celebrating a Special Gift We have so many generous members and companies in the FIA membership…just reflecting on you all now really brings a smile to my face. Members give in many ways: their time, their talent, and their financial resources. This time of year brings about the FIA Annual Meeting of Members and our celebration of Lifetime Achievement Award Winners. We recognized Don Jones of Forge Resources Group (posthumously) and Sharon Haverstock (retired Scot Forge) (see pg 68) at FIA's Annual Meeting of Members. In their own ways, Don and Sharon have been so generous to FIA over the years in service to FIA. They are so worthy of celebrating! Recently, Mike Wozniak of Wozniak Industries reached out to me interested in recognizing a very special person in his family’s life – his father Edward F. Wozniak – founder of Wozniak Industries. In cooperation with FIERF, Wozniak Industries is endowing a scholarship in Ed’s name AND endowing the new Summer Camp Program just launching this July with a $150,000 gift to the Forging Foundation/FIERF. FIERF Trustees generously approved partial match funds to complete each of the $100,000 endowments. We are extremely grateful for this generous gift from the Wozniak family coordinated by Mike Wozniak and look forward to putting it to great use! Best regards,
James R. Warren President and CEO Forging Industry Association
PUBLISHER James R. Warren email@example.com MANAGING EDITOR Angela Gibian firstname.lastname@example.org Editorial Staff
Board of Directors
Antonio Alvarez Perry Bennet Robert Brodhead Mark Candy Mark Derry Robert Dimitrieff
Jose Lozano Mike Morgus Matt Natale James Romeo Joe Schwegman
ASSOCIATE EDITOR Amanda Dureiko email@example.com DESIGN Lorean Crowder firstname.lastname@example.org
CHAIRPERSON Chelsea Lantto VICE CHAIRPERSON JimKravec
FIA MAGAZINE | MAY 2023 1
MAY 2023 | VOLUME 5
PRESIDENT'S NOTE 1 President's Note
OPERATIONS & MANAGEMENT 50 Labor Laws FAQ 52 Growth In Impression Die Tonnage Surpasses Receipts 54 Creating a Company Strategy 56 Education at the Speed of Industry 58 A Hybrid Work Environment in Manufacturing 60 Understanding Continuous Improvement Strategies 62 A Key Connection for Women in Business INDUSTRY NEWS 64 Aalberts surface technologies Announces Expansion 66 Anchor Harvey Celebrates 100 Years in Business in 2023 68 FIA Honors 2023 Lifetime Achievement Award Winners 70 Forging Industry Association Announces Safety Award Winners 71 Welcome New Member 72 FIA Member Spotlight 74 CONDAT Again Awarded Platinum Medal by EcoVadis 77 Making History: The Forging Industry Association Elects Its First Female Board Chair 78 One of America’s Oldest Tool Manufacturers: Warwood Tool Company 82 The Power of Learning by Doing 83 FIERF Launches Its First Women in Forging Mentorship Program 84 Donor Spotlight FORGING RESEARCH 85 Final Report: Evaluation of Rejuvenated Forging Tools MEMBERS SPEAK 90 Reinvigorating the Workforce AD INDEX 92 May Advertiser Index 80 FIA Upcoming Events FOUNDATION NEWS
WASHINGTON UPDATE 4 Washington Wrap-Up 6 Economic Coalitions Form: The World Wakes up to China ENERGY 8 FIA Members, Consider Buying 11 How To Win Efficiency and Influence Your Forging Costs EQUIPMENT & TECHNOLOGY 16 Your Forge Shop of The Future Starts Today 18 Continue to Grow Your Workforce with AMADA’s Billet Saw & Milling Machines MAINTENANCE 20 Nozzle Clogging, A Symptom of Underlying Issues 22 Maintenance’s Role in Production Automation 24 Air Counterbalances: A Matter of Cost AUTOMATION 26 Digital Twins - A New Tool in the Forger's Kit 32 Automated Die Lubrication in Forging Applications 34 Before Automation…Things to Consider 36 Digital Process Twins - A New Paradigm for the Forging Industry 39 Moving Existing Automation Technology Into The Industry 4.0 Generation 42 Recommended Practices for Robot and Cell Programming MATERIALS 48 Advancements in Metal Forming Technologies Now: You Won’t Get Hurt Falling Out the Basement Window!
DEPARTMENTS 1 President's Note 4 Washington Update 8 Energy 16 Equipment & Technology 20 Maintenance 26 Automation 48 Materials 50 Operations & Management 64 Industry News
82 Foundation News 85 Forging Research 90 Members Speak 92 Ad Index
Official Publication of the Forging Industry Association
Automation& Material Handling Digital Twins A New Tool in the Forger’s Kit Page 26
Automated Die Lubrication in Forging Applications Page 32 Before Automation…Things to Consider Page 34 Recommended Practices for Robot and Cell Programming Page 42
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FIA Magazine (ISSN 2643-1254 (print) and ISSN 2643-1262 (online)) is published 4 times annually, May, August, November and February by the Forging Industry Association, 6363 Oak Tree Blvd., Independence, Ohio 44131. Telephone: (216) 781-6260. Only (1) copy of the print version distributed at no charge only to members of the Forging Industry Association. Digital version distributed at no charge to qualified individuals. Subscription requests available at www. forging.org. Printed in the U.S.A. Periodicals postage paid in Independence, OH and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Forging Industry Association, 6363 Oak Tree Blvd., Independence, Ohio 44131. Copyright © 2023 by the Forging Industry Association in both printed and electronic formats. All rights reserved. The contents of this publication may not be reproduced in whole or part without the consent of the publisher. The publisher is not responsible for product claims and representations or for any statement made or opinion expressed herein. Data and information presented by the authors of specific articles are for informational purposes only and are not intended for use without independent, substantiating investigation on the part of potential users.
FIA MAGAZINE | MAY 2023
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As we close out the first quarter of 2023, let’s look back at the last few months here at the Forging Industry Association through the government affairs lens. FIA has been heavily involved in three areas: 1) Spreading awareness of capability and capacity of the industry with the White House; 2) Working with America Makes in creating a roadmap for augmenting casting and forging with additive manufacturing and; 3) Urging Congress and the Department of Defense – Industrial Base Analysis and Sustainment office – to support a Forging Improvement Program. FIA has remained extremely active and involved in ensuring the preservation and success of our industry. Washington Wrap-Up By Megha Patel
Additive Manufacturing: Complementing Forging FIA and four casting associations partnered with America Makes to help identify opportunities where additive manufacturing technologies can complement, NOT replace, forging and casting manufacturing processes. In fact, FIA members very kindly offered and conducted tours for the AmericaMakes teamto further illustrate that forging cannot be replaced as the manufacturing process is extremely unique and creates unparalleled strength necessary for critical applications, like munitions, but additive manufacturing can be leveraged to aid the forging process. The project seeks to enhance national security interests and wartime readiness for critical defense platforms. America Makes, in partnership with FIA, convened select members from the forging, casting, additive manufacturing and government communities for two sessions: Visioning and Functional Analysis, of interactive workshops. The aims were to identify issues affecting forging and casting supply chains and their common characteristics, map AM opportunities to those issues, define the scope and investment required, and determine what infrastructure is needed to address the identified challenges. A final report and roadmap will be released to FIA later this year.
The Forging Industry Has Capacity for DoD and All Industries In February, FIA and a handful of members met with the White House National Economic Council and Made in America Office to discuss the capabilities and capacities of the forging industry. They all illustrated forgers are thriving and can produce any part required by the Department of Defense at the drop of a hat. Our members and FIA aided in diminishing the false narrative and misconception that forging manufacturers cannot meet the demands of the government. The National Economic Council and Made in America representatives asked about the industry’s pain points and challenges, which members clearly identified as unfair trade and the labor shortage. All indicated that bad foreign actors, mainly China, dumped parts at the fraction of the North American forged part cost. As an example, the cost of a finished, heat treated, and machined component from a Chinese forger is identical to the cost of rawmaterial from a domestic manufacturer. As of now, the Section 301 tariffs are still in effect, which has helped North American forgers compete at a more level playing field. However, a 50% tariff would be further effective than the current 25% rate. The White House officials were receptive to the comments and even followed up by asking for more data and information, which FIA provided based on a recent capacity survey of members. FIA will continue to stay in constant communication with the White House to ensure the forging industry is accurately portrayed as having the capacity to take on any projects the DoD or any industry has for us.
FIA MAGAZINE | MAY 2023
Congressional Forging Improvement Initiative Program FIA has embarked on an opportunity for $25million in government funding to further grow the forging industry and scale up readiness for the warfighter. One part of the request is $15 million in Department of Defense funding for member-focused community colleges and trade schools to aid in workforce development. The other part of the request is a $10 million congressional programmatic increase for university technical projects and members to innovate forging technology. FIA had numerous members visit Capitol Hill in February and March to illustrate the critical need for and importance of granting the funding requests. All appropriations forms have been submitted; however, we are now in the waiting phase to see if our efforts were successful. The House of Representatives should release its markups in the next couple of months and the Senate should complete its markups by the end of the Summer or early Fall, but that may change due to the fluid nature of this process. As more information becomes available on the requests, FIA will update members right away. Thank you all for your tremendous support as we continue to ramp up our advocacy efforts. None of this would be possible without our members. FIA will continue to promote and ensure the prosperity of the North American forging industry.
Megha M. Patel Government Affairs Manager Forging Industry Association Phone: 216-781-6260 Email: email@example.com
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FIA MAGAZINE | MAY 2023 5
Economic Coalitions Form: The World Wakes up to China By John Guzik
Few things unify politicians on both sides of the aisle inWashington, D.C. as does the People’s Republic of China. Even fewer issues are bringing politicians across the globe together than the economic threat that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) poses. And the threat is real; just ask the Europeans who source 98 percent of their rare earth supplies fromChina. The U.S., European Union, and Japan are working to create an economic supply chain block that is not as easily described as East vs. West, but as democratic economies vs. communist or managed economies. Should the policies these governments are considering take effect, they could have the ability to alter global supply chains for decades to come, by both lowering barriers and raising them. Washington is leading an effort to block the export of certain manufactured goods and technologies to China, not only from the United States but also securing commitments from allies in an effort to isolate China and other “foreign adversaries.” This designation of a foreign adversary is gaining steam in U.S. Government circles as policymakers group China, Russia, North Korea, and Iran together as a group of countries to whom the Biden administration wants to restrict exports to and imports from in the coming months. As the Biden administration seeks to rally global allies into this new economic and technological coalition, the U.S. Congress is looking internally at how China is influencing American society, industry, and national security. In January 2023, Congress -- in a rare sign of bipartisanship -- established the House Select Committee on China to examine vulnerabilities in technology and national security and possibly make recommendations on how to address concerns with China. In a recent editorial, the Chairman of the Select Committee on China, U.S. Representative Mike Gallagher (R-WI) wrote that
the Committee would seek ways to “restore supply chains and end critical economic dependencies on China, strengthen the military, end the CCP’s theft of American personal data and intellectual property, and contrast the CCP’s techno-totalitarian state with the values of the Free World.” In just a few months since its establishment, the Committee has held several hearings to study Chinese aggression. In both the House and Senate, lawmakers from both parties introduced more than 120 bills to address the China threat including allowing the President to force the sale of foreign owned technologies, apps, and software (i.e., TikTok), and defend Taiwan’s security. The Fighting Trade Cheats Act, the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism Pilot ProgramAct, the American Innovation and Jobs Act, and China Grand Strategy Commission are just examples of a few China-related bills introduced this year. On March 27, 2023, the House unanimously passed by a vote of 415-0, the People’s Republic of China is Not a Developing Country Act. These types of votes are usually reserved for the non-controversial act of naming a post office, not making major policy decisions. FIA is working with lawmakers on both sides of the aisle to formulate legislation to address many of the concerns facing the forging industry and manufacturing sector more broadly. FIA members from across the country recently visited the White House and their Senators and members of Congress to urge them to reach out to the U.S. Trade Representative to keep the 25 percent tariffs in place. While Congress is considering China-related legislation, the Administration, separate from its global supply chain efforts, is debating whether to extend nearly 10,000 tariffs on Chinese products entering the U.S. Currently, the administration is reviewing nearly 1,500 comments filed by those supporting and
FIA MAGAZINE | MAY 2023
opposing the Section 301 tariffs, including those filed by FIA and forty of its members urging the USTR to keep the tariffs on Chinese forgings in place. In a recent FIA survey of its members, 76 percent of forgers added jobs as a direct result of the 25 percent tariffs. These tariffs also brought in new business and removing the protective measures on imported Chinese forgings would hurt the workforce, as 63 percent of survey respondents indicated they would have to freeze or reduce their workforce if the Biden administration lifts the tariffs. FIA is working directly with the White House to keep the tariffs as part of their supply chain resiliency strategy as 53 percent of FIA members indicated they increased spending on their U.S. suppliers. To address the Forging Industry naysayers, who claim they cannot find a domestic forger and therefore the tariffs should be removed, another survey of our members indicated forgers have a 39 percent open capacity rate to produce more domestic forgings – all real world data FIA has provided to the White House. This multipronged approach -- working with Congress and the Biden administration -- brings bipartisan attention to China and helps the forging industry keep pressuring policymakers to keep the Section 301 25 percent tariffs on imported Chinese forgings. As the Select Committee on China continues its work highlighting the challenges we face with China, as the Congress considers the many China bills, and as the administration continues its “get tough” approach to China, we are witnessing efforts at a global realignment of supply chain policies geared towards uniting against China and other foreign adversaries. FIA is making the case that the 25 percent tariffs are a key component of this strategy and policymakers are paying attention, not just in the U.S., but around the world.
John Guzik is a founding partner of the Franklin Partnership with over 30 years of Capitol Hill and campaign experience. Previously, John served as Chief of Staff for Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp. He was the top legislative strategist working on tax, trade, health care, transportation and agriculture issues. John also works closely with the Senate Finance Committee on health care, tax, trade, and many other issues important to his clients. Since entering the private sector in 2001, John has developed vital
relationships with the Executive Branch, the Departments of Interior, Treasury, Commerce, and Health and Human Services, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Office of the US Trade Representative, as well as the Army Corps of Engineers. In addition, John develops and implements comprehensive legislative and contribution strategies, to further expand his client’s political footprint in Washington. After leaving Capitol Hill, Congressman Tom Davis (R-VA) tapped John to be the Deputy Executive Director of the National Republican Congressional Committee, where he served as the liaison with the House Republican Leadership, coordinating activities to complement the legislative agenda in the U.S. House of Representatives. He has extensive contacts in both the House and Senate leadership and with key
committees. John Guzik Partner The Franklin Partnership Phone: 202-285-9987 www.Thefranklinpartnership.com
FIA MAGAZINE | MAY 2023 7
FIA Members, Consider Buying Now: You Won’t Get Hurt Falling Out the Basement Window! By Jane Seagraves
Recent Wall Street Journal headlines (and subheads) capture a lot of the drama playing out in today’s energy markets and reveal much about what forgers need to consider as they map out and execute their buying strategies: • Natural Gas: Fasten Your Seat Belts (February 11, 2023) The buffers that keep America’s natural-gas price fluctuations at bay are eroding. • Natural-Gas Prices Plunge, and Drillers Dial Back (February 23, 2023) Prices for fuel have fallen by two-thirds since mid-December.
Yet, the real takeaway from this entire situation can be summarized by the headline of this article: Consider Buying Now: You Won’t Get Hurt Falling Out the Basement Window! Welcome to the new normal of extreme energy-price volatility, one that rewards those prepared to go to market and lock in low prices when they are available, because those prices may very well be fleeting.
Quite a Quarter: Natural-Gas Prices in Freefall Over the past year, my colleagues and I at Transparent Energy have worked to educate our customers and prospects on the macro- and micro-factors transforming natural gas, and by extension electricity, markets. From the ongoing war in Ukraine – and the EU’s cold turkey exit from dependence on Russia’s energy reserves – to LNG exports and storage levels to weather, what we’ve really seen is a permanent change of a predominantly U.S.-only natural gas market to a conjoined U.S./European natural gas market. With a much bigger market, and with a very high demand for natural gas that accounts for pretty much every dekatherm in production, prices should be rising, not falling, right? One might think so, but hold on. This is where we need to look deeper, and why forgers need to be working with an expert to buy the energy that powers your buildings, operations, and entire portfolios.
TheWar in Ukraine In the past, we’ve detailed how the war inUkraine increased demand from Europe for U.S. natural gas supplies and how that bump in demand strained current production and put upward pressure on natural-gas prices. But guess what? We’re at the end of this cycle now – i.e., we’re a year into the war and Europe has adjusted . The EU bought our gas and steadily increased its winter storage supplies. In fact, sweeping legislation has been enacted by the EU requiring member countries to pretty much max out their winter natural gas permanently going forward. And while that is excellent news for U.S. suppliers and will keep demand for natural gas high for the long term, something else has happened in the short term: mild winter weather. This may be remembered as “the winter that didn’t happen.” Winter conditions in the U.S. and across Europe were incredibly
FIA MAGAZINE | MAY 2023
mild, meaning heating demand, and thus demand for natural gas, languished. Complemented by record production set in motion by expected huge increases in demand, natural gas storage levels remained far more elevated than anticipated for this time of year and sent prices down precipitously. Sure, there have been a few instances of cold weather in places like Texas that affected production and jolted the market, but they have been temporary. The fact of thematter is that if you have energy contracts expiring in the next 12 months, you should take a very hard look at the prices you can get in today’s markets. Supply/Demand Conundrum = Two Years of Market Volatility (Potentially Extreme) The U.S./European natural gas marriage creates a massive coordination challenge that will very likely roil energy markets. To support Europe’s energy needs, the U.S. has to produce more natural gas than ever, but there are a host of challenges that go with this. The U.S. has a capacity issue. Simply put, we have a limited number of liquid natural gas processing facilities. These plants are necessary, because we need to convert natural gas to LNG in order to put large enough volumes on barges (vs. through pipelines) for our EU allies. Currently, we are in the process of creating more LNG plants, but they will not be in production for at least two more years . That means we have to ship as much natural gas as possible on a monthly basis to Europe to keep their storage levels as elevated as possible. But Europe’s storage capacity is limited . They never needed large storage infrastructure in the past, because natural gas had historically been piped there directly. That means that even with current storage levels high, the ugly truth is the EU will run out of natural gas if a “normal” winter occurs in 2023-2024. So where does that leave us? Currently, storage levels are very elevated domestically (and in Europe), and we are still producing lots of natural gas. As a result, prices have fallen, and producers are going to stop producing , because it will become uneconomical for them to continue doing so. Yet, this leads us into a very precarious situation. Turning off natural gas wells is something that producers work very hard to avoid. That’s because it is difficult (as in it takes months) and prohibitively expensive to turn them back on unless the economics make it a no brainer (i.e., prices are elevated). Bottom line, if natural gas prices sink too low, producers are forced (and already have made announcements they will do so) to shut down these wells, and it will be a good bit of time (months) before they can get them up and producing again. While we continue to sell Europe what we can on a monthly basis, a few weeks of hot weather this summer would draw down our domestic and respective European reserves considerably (natural gas is used to create electricity for air conditioning). Since last summer was the 3rd hottest recorded summer in the U.S., a repeat would all but deplete existing supplies – and with decreased production, we could see natural-gas prices skyrocket again.
Further, if prices do go up in the summer, we will face a predicament in the fall season, when weather “projections” will be made for the upcoming winter, which invariably leads to increased natural-gas price predictions. Bottom line: In today’s markets, it is just about impossible to balance supply and demand, and that will be the case until we have more LNG plants available, and more storage facilities built in Europe. That means we can expect a volatile couple of years , with the potential for extremely high and low prices available within the same calendar year. So where does that leave you? Lock in Low Prices While You Can With natural gas prices as low as they are today (well below $3.00/ Dth as I write this article), we like to say, “It’s hard to get hurt falling out the basement window.” Could prices go down even farther? Yes, but there’s a limit. Producers won’t continue producing at a loss. Could prices go higher? Yes, and there’s a lot of room to run there. Less than a year ago, natural gas prices were above $9.00. For large energy buyers, such as forgers, these price swings, this volatility , can crush operating budgets. Now is the time to potentially take a lot of upward risk off the table and either lock in a rate that is dramatically better than anything that was available in 2022, or at least put yourself in a position to procure power as prices start to rise – which can happen quickly. We have entered an era where every drop of natural gas is accounted for – think everything from Europe’s dependence on U.S. natural gas to the electrification trend (EVs, etc.) sweeping the world, one that is reliant on natural gas as a “bridge fuel” to reaching net zero emissions. That means any blip or longer-term change – be it weather, natural-disaster, socio-economic, or war-related – could leave sub-$3.00 natural gas far behind in the rearviewmirror. Forgers’ Playbook for Taking Advantage of Today’s Low Prices Here’s your playbook for taking advantage of today’s market lows while protecting yourself from the bite of future energy-price spikes: 1. Be Proactive. Get ready now, so you can take advantage of soft spots in the market, like the one we are in now, and ones that will present themselves in the future. This will be even more important as the 2023 summer cooling season (i.e., the need for air conditioning) approaches and as geo-political unrest remains high. Transparent Energy can work with FIA Members today to assess your energy use, understand your cost parameters and risk-management needs, and pounce on savings opportunities. Don’t sit idly by and become an “order taker,” someone who goes to market at the last minute and takes whatever you get because your energy contract is about to run out.That approach could prove tragic. Instead, look ahead and engage an expert like Transparent Energy who can bring the best of the market to you each and every time, especially now .
FIA MAGAZINE | MAY 2023 9
2. Develop a Risk-Management Strategy. Understand your short- and long-term pricing options. Have a plan in place to continue to manage away from risk to stay in line with budgets. Taking advantage of today’s favorable buying conditions now can help you take a lot of risk off the table. 3. Know Your Options. Letting Transparent Energy bring your load to market and having suppliers bid for it – against each other – in a live auction is the best way for you to price the market, understand all its possibilities, and see and select the best products for your budget and risk tolerance. Price discovery of this sort does not exist anywhere else in the market and is absolutely priceless . Consider all your options, so you can make an informed procurement decision. 4. Ensure YouLeave anAudit Trail to Support YourDecisions. It is vital that you implement a process that shows why you bought energy at any given time and the steps you took to buy responsibly. By making informed decisions and cataloguing your strategy and the market conditions shaping it, you will write a legacy of competence. Energy prices don’t stay low forever. Volatility is back. Working with an expert will help. Working with an expert now will help even more. Transparent Energy is that expert.
For more on what’s driving today’s energy markets and making sure your next moves within them are a win for your interests, register for a rebroadcast of our recent webinar, “Understanding the Fundamentals Driving Energy Markets (and When You Should Consider Procuring Your Next Energy Contract).” And, when you are ready to reduce your exposure to energy market volatility in 2023 and beyond and bring the proven expertise of Transparent Energy into your energy-procurement process, contact Jane Seagraves at firstname.lastname@example.org. Jane Seagraves VP, Association and Partnership Development Transparent Energy Phone: 862-210-8770 Email: email@example.com
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FIA MAGAZINE | MAY 2023 10
How To Win Efficiency and Influence Your Forging Costs: A Case Study of Induction Heater Performance, Part One By Josh Carney
The method of heating forging stock via electromagnetic induction is both practical and efficient. A single induction heater consumes more energy than the combined total electrical load of all other machinery employed in the forging process. Modern utility billing practices obscure the energy cost of individual production machine units, and a quantified view is wanting. This article describes the method of measuring and calculating the actual energy cost of an individual production machine. The machine studied is an inline billet induction heating system. This article also investigates the electrical efficiency of a modern induction heating installation and the practices which support efficient operation. The plant electrical utility bill presents a significant variable cost to a forging company’s operating expenses. Induction heating (IH) equipment makes up a substantial portion of the plant's electrical load. In forging, we know some things in detail about manufacturing costs, and some things are unclear. For example, the price of material stock is clear, as are tooling fees and labor costs, but the actual price of the energy to produce a forging is often unknown. It would be to our advantage to have this information. Why? Production energy costs influence the final cost of a forged part, and having energy cost information helps determine final pricing. It also gives insight into which products are most profitable to produce and aids in decision-making when seeking to improve efficiency. The challenge in measuring the per-unit cost of production arises from utility billing practices.
Since the electric utility/provider (EP) places their meter at the service entrance and not the point of use, e.g., the forge press or induction heater, the EP bill cannot provide any insight into the individual power consumption of the forging line equipment. It is merely an aggregate measurement of all the equipment in use. An example of this is in Figure 1, with a central point termed the ‘service entrance’ and equipment supplied by branch circuits. The solution to this problem is using an energy survey to determine the price-per unit value of the energy costs of a machine. This article will examine the methods and outcome of an energy surveymeasuring the amount of electricity an induction billet heater uses during a production shift. First is the example calculation of billet heating cost per unit using actual energy consumption data. Second is the measurement of energy efficiency. Part two of this article explores the winning production activities that positively affect energy efficiency. Part two also examines several facets of operational efficiency and its influence on the final cost of a forging. Survey Test Procedures The IH unit surveyed was a three-coil inline billet induction heater. Electrical energy consumption data was collected using a Dranetz™ brand power monitoring device. It was installed at the incoming power connection of the induction heater to record the power used during a production run.
Figure 1: An example of the service entrance and branch circuits
Dranetz™ power monitor installed at the induction heater
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Results Before proceeding into specific information about costs, it must first be noted that the survey results are specific to the IH studied. Any variation in EP billing rate, material, temperature, throughput rate, coil configuration, or power supply topology will directly impact the final utility cost. Calculating Electricity Costs As the client’s energy pricing is proprietary, the total energy cost was calculated from the rate provided by a selected municipal electric utility. The utility “Cleveland Public Power” (CPP) was chosen, and the CPP electricity rate schedule  is shown in Table 1.
The monitor was set to record measurements at close intervals and retain the data in the internal memory. From this data, values for kilowatts (kW), kilowatt-hours (kWhr), reactive power (kVAR), harmonics, and other characteristics were analyzed and categorized. Chart 1 is an example of the detail provided by the power monitoring.
Chart 1: Load power characteristics The operating parameters were also recorded, including billet size, composition, throughput rate, and IH power settings. All heated billets were counted, including those heated and rejected, along with any downtime. The survey lasted 5.65 hours, during which a consistent one-hour production run was attained, providing steady-state results to base calculations. Any changes to IH power and throughput rate are included in the analysis.
Table 1: Municipal utility industrial electricity rate schedule To estimate monthly cost the electrical energy use data was extrapolated over an 8-hour/day, 26-day month and calculated using the EP rates. The result shown in Table 2 is that the monthly operating cost for a single induction heater at the specified throughput is approximately $9,015/month.
Table 2: Electricity cost analysis
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Applying the data to the measured throughput of 4753 lbs./hr., the average heating cost of one induction unit comes out to $9,015.81/ month , which equals $18.24/ton of material. Measured Efficiency Next is the calculation of efficiency. Table 3 lists the throughput parameters of the IH evaluated.
InTable 2, the kWdemand charge has the most significant influence on utility cost, comprising 61.31% of the utility bill. Next is the kWhr (energy) charge at 38.39%, and finally, the kVAR (reactive/ lagging load) charge at 0.31%. To explain the impact of demand charges on a utility bill, let us consider the CPP definition of demand, which most electrical utilities adopt. In clause 523.043(d), “Determination of Demand,” it reads: “(d) Determination of Demand. The kilowatt demand shall be determined monthly by demand measurements and shall be the maximum thirty-minute [integrated] kilowatt demand during the month.”
Table 3: IH throughput parameters During steady state operation, electrical efficiency of the power supply (input to coil terminals) was calculated at 92.3%, where:
The power required to heat the material at 100% efficiency in a zero loss (ideal) situation is calculated to be 502 kW. From this, it is found that the total efficiency of the IH system is 63.6%, where:
As described in terms of pounds per kilowatt, an efficiency of 6.01 lbs./kW is obtained, where:
Chart 1A: Induction kilowatt (kW) demand over a shift Chart 1A shows that the demand average is 740 kW and represents the power in kW averaged over the study. At the start of production, the demand was lower, around 700 kW, then increased to 791 kW. According to the CPP rate schedule, the higher demand sets the demand charge in Table 2. Because of the definition of demand, if the IH operates for a mere 30 minutes and then remains off for the remainder of the billing period, the utility bill would still include the 791kW demand charge, amounting to $5,527 regardless of how long the IH operated following the 30-minute period of operation. Suppose the kW demand had increased from 791 kW to 1100 kW for 30 minutes and then reduced to 791 kW. Also, suppose the total kWhr remained the same for the entire month. What would happen? Thanks to the demand billing definition, the demand charge for the whole of the month would be set at the 1100 kW rate. The utility bill would be increased by more than $2,000 for a single 30-minute increase in demand. Chart 2 is a graphical display of how this affects the charges.
is different than the kW meter values
*Special note: the value for used in Table 2. The value of
was measured during one hour of uninterrupted operation and is not averaged against downtime. The kW meter value used for the cost calculation is averaged over 5.65 hours, then extrapolated, accounting for power level adjustments and downtime. In other words, the value kW meter is what the utility meter would have ‘seen’ and billed against. * Discussion From the data, two parallel discussions naturally arise: utility costs and efficiency. These parallels then come back together, leading to the topic of operational efficiency, which is discussed in the second part of this article. Utility Costs Industrial electrical/utility providers use a complex billing structure to determine the cost of electrical energy they supply to customers. The most notable is that the EP ‘rewards’ customers who keep their demand low, i.e., spreading power use over more extended periods.
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Conclusions Electricity costs are a significant portion of operating expenses. An electrical energy survey will determine the energy consumption and cost of an individual piece of equipment. A survey does this by measuring machine power independently of the rest of the plant. The piece cost is calculated by applying the energy cost to production data. This provides production pricing information where the aggregate nature of the utility bill would have otherwise obscured it. The electrical utility pricing structures are weighted towards demand-based charges. Above-average electrical demand will disproportionately increase operating expenses, dramatically influencing the final cost per unit. Energy use is a hot topic as utilities raise their prices. Induction heating has widely variable efficiency and in some instances may be improved through analysis and planning. In the second part of this two-part article, we will look at the varied ways that a forging producer may affect efficiency through changes to production processes and workflow.
Chart 2: Demand charges significantly affect electricity costs So then, it is practically observed that high-demand loads such as motor starting, or high IH power settings significantly increase utility costs. By mitigating high intermittent loads, the energy cost can decrease considerably. SystemEfficiency What affects efficiency? Can any parameter be adjusted to improve it? A partial list of the factors affecting induction heating efficiency includes: • Material resistivity • Stock diameter • Final temperature • Coil fill ratio • Coil design • IH power supply topology/design The most significant loss of electrical efficiency is from: • Ohmic (joule) heating in the induction coils • Billet heat loss through radiation and convection • Poor electromagnetic coupling between the coil and billet, which results in further coil/capacitor ohmic heating The pounds-per-kilowatt efficiency of 6.01 lbs./kW is a friendly outcome considering this is the approximate efficiency number communicated by several induction OEMs. The fact that it equates to an energy loss of 36% is still somewhat cringeworthy, to borrow a modern expression, but that is just how the entropy goes. One incidental result of the efficiency survey is finding the efficiency of the induction heating power supply. In this case, the power supply (coils not included) had a measured efficiency of 92.3%. The power supply losses are from heat generated in the inductors, semiconductors, and capacitors. In the case of a 2,000 kW unit, the 7.7% loss equals 154 kW. Lastly is the loss of efficiency through the manufacturing process itself. Total production efficiency depends partly on the machine's electrical efficiency and partly on production methods. Part two of this study will look at these in greater detail.
Josh Carney is president of Integral Power Technologies LLC, a company that services induction heating equipment for the forging and the other metals industries. IPT also provides consultation services for electrical power quality problems, load measurement, demand monitoring, and efficiency improvements. Josh Carney Integral Power Technologies LLC Phone: 440-701-6022 www.ipt-tech.com
Bibliography  C. P. Power, "Billing Rate Schedule," Cleveland Public Power, [Online]. Available: https://www.cpp.org/info/Pricing/Rate-Schedule. [Accessed 15 March 2023].
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II Horizontal Reciprocator Apr23.pdf 1 4/10/2023 10:47:02 AM
Horizontal Reciprocator Automated Die Lubrication System
EQUIPMENT & TECHNOLOGY
Your Forge Shop of The Future Starts Today Digitalization Solutions That Forge the Path to Improved Performance By Jaime Israel
The perception that forgers cannot practically incorporate digitalization and modernization best practices to improve performance—in comparison to operators optimizing sheet metal forming lines—is not entirely misplaced. Working with smaller openings of the slide, and materials such as graphite during the lubrication process, poses a bottleneck for certain realized technologies pertaining to camera-based visual systems and more. However, there are many other ways to achieve the “Forge Shop of the Future.” The forging industry must focus on predictive maintenance, forge shop planning, and energy savings as the initial “jump” into the digitalization pool of possibilities.
steps, and immediate feedback can be provided to ensure your forging press is up-and-running again as soon as possible. Schuler Connect is a form of service support that is simple and intuitive. Forgers can present issues hands-free and connect with support when using smart glasses, or they can easily point the camera from their smart phone or tablet to showcase any issues. Forgers can speak through the technology in their native language, and the technology automatically translates to the global support team— enabling worldwide, 24/7 assistance without any language barriers. The AR technology also allows for Schuler’s Service team to mark any defective parts or directly show changes in a setting—for which forgers can view directly in their field of vision. This form of support can resolve stoppages in production and save significant costs. Schuler Connect will be available for forgers to demo at Schuler’s booth during Forge Fair, booth 113. Forge Shop Planning Forgers can optimize production and forge shop planning with machine applications and cloud solutions. Schuler’s machine applications from Digital Suite are designed to avoid efficiency losses and damage risks. Machine applications include Schuler’s Press Force Monitor, Production Monitor, Cooling Analytics, Lubrication Analytics, andDrive Analytics. All applications provide real-time and historical production data, and forgers can receive email push notifications in the event of anomalies. Data is highly secure and can be accessed from any smart device. Press Force Monitor: displays press force trends and force distributions for immediate detection of improperly set press forces specific to each die and incorrectly positioned dies per flow direction. The accumulation of die-specific historical data enables forgers to better plan die overhauls. Production Monitor: provides current stroke rate, plant productivity, and production order status data. Production Monitor detects abnormalities early, due to operational or die-specific reasons, so forgers can rapidly optimize system productivity. Forgers can benefit from this technology as the historical data allows for accurate order planning, realistic parts costing, identification of production trends such as stroke rates, unscheduled downtimes, and system utilization.
Predictive Maintenance Forgers can achieve predictive maintenance in a variety of ways. Service agreements, smart inspections, and augmented reality (AR) tools are current solutions that Schuler North America can provide for the market. Schuler Connect is a great example of digitalization as it is an AR technology that enables safe and cost effective remote support and troubleshooting via smart glasses or application software. This technology becomes critical when you, or your service provider, cannot travel, production deadlines are approaching too fast for a specialist to reach you in time, your forging system is not remote-capable, or the current/preventative request cannot be localized by connecting to the controller. Schuler Connect allows remote connection to Schuler’s team of qualified experts—regardless of location—and the technology provides a highly secured audio and video connection for Schuler’s Service team to assess and evaluate your forging needs. Assistance, guided
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