New Era For Automotive Remanufacturing

In conjunction with major organizations representing the international automotive remanufacturing industry, APRA has joined to agree on common and fundamental definitions for essential terms related to remanufacturing, following a meeting in Frankfurt, Germany on September 13th, 2016. Below are the agreed-upon definitions:

REMANUFACTURING PROCESS:

•    Remanufacturing is a standardized industrial process* by which cores are returned to same-as-new, or better, condition and performance. The process is in line with specific technical specifications, including engineering, quality and testing standards. The process yields fully warranted products.
*An industrial process is an established process, which is fully documented, and capable to fulfill the requirements established by the remanufacturer.

CORE:

•    A core is a previously sold, worn or non-functional product or part, intended for the remanufacturing process. During reverse logistics, a core is protected, handled and identified for remanufacturing to avoid damage and to preserve its value. A core is not waste or scrap and is not intended to be reused before remanufacturing.

European associations have further agreed to the following definition:

REMANUFACTURED PART

•    A remanufactured part fulfills a function which is at least equivalent compared to the original part. It is restored from an existing part (CORE), using standardized industrial processes in line with specific technical specifications. A remanufactured part is given the same warranty as a new part and it clearly identifies the part as a remanufactured part and states the remanufacturer.

The common language is a landmark achievement inautomotive remanufacturing, and offers a bright future for an industrythat has already benefitted from greater awareness, among policy makers and the general public, in recent years. In 2015, the United States Congress passed legislation recognizing the federal government’s responsibility for outfitting its vehicles through remanufacture. The same year the G7 Alliance for Resource Efficiency declared its support for remanufacturing at a summit attended by representatives from business, government, organized labor, research, and science.

Despite the trend toward official recognition and support for the industry, the absence of unified and codified language to describe key terms, threatened to undermine the gains in automotive remanufacturing. The lack of cohesion led to misunderstanding and sub-optimal growth, as well as competition, rather than collaboration, among organizations representing auto remanufacturers, all with a common goal of growing the industry. Early indications suggest that this state of affairs is over.

As the Asia-Pacific partner of the APRA (Automotive Parts Remanufacturers Association), a non-profit trade association representing more than 1,000 automotive remanufacturers, Duxes has a history of engagement with and support for the automotive remanufacturing industry.With the release of the reman terminology, we will take the responsibility of promoting the terms and definitions in China and Asia Pacific area, and inform the rapidly expandingremanufacturing industryof the prospect for increased efficiency, and cooperation with international partners, offered by the new terminology, as well as the potential for futurelegal recognition.

About Duxes Reman Consulting

Duxes Reman Business was started in 2008 afterthe NDRC’sintroduction ofan automotive parts remanufacturing pilot program. Following a partnership agreement between Duxes and the Automotive Parts Remanufacturers Association (APRA) in 2015, Duxes has assumed the role of the APRA’s Asia Pacific Agency.This platform has enabled Duxes to carry forward its mission of promoting the development of the remanufacturing industry in the Asia-Pacific region, and facilitating industrial relations among remanufacturing companies and related organizations around the world.

Car Market Brings In Recession Fears

The world is in a pitiful state in the wrap of debts and deflationary forces.

It has been a crucial year for Australia’s once extremely booming car industry. A series of bad news for the Australian car market: last May Ford had announced its decision to shut down all manufacture in Australia, and next in line was General Motors in December to announce the same.

Toyota, will gradually shut down its assembly lines by 2017 emphasizing that the slow death of car manufactures in Australia could be a sign of warning for an impending recession. Toyota revealed that is was heartbroken to initiate a shutdown in the southern state of Victoria while condemning the Australian dollar for its rigidity.

Around 2,500 Toyota workers will lose their jobs. The economic impact however will be much far-fetched than can be imagined at the moment with a huge unemployment rate in the automotive supply sector and even farther than that. This can completely wipe off AU$21bn (US$19bn) from the national economy, leaving as many as 2000,000 jobs at risk: even sectors from transport, logistics and other business services.

“We are now really starting to experience some of the worst [economic] conditions that other nations such as Britain and parts of Europe have faced,” says associate professor John Spoehr, executive director of the Australian Workplace, Innovation and Social Research Centre at the University of Adelaide.

According to him the states of Victoria and South Australia which are primarily into manufacturing, might be engulfed in recession soon enough.

“This is the death of the car making industry as we know it,” he told the BBC, adding that the impact on the workforce would most definitely be “terribly dislocating as a greater number of people experience long-term unemployment from which they find it difficult to recover”.

“We should have recognised some time ago that the future of assembly manufacture in car making was limited and we should have prepared for this day” – Prof Roy Green UTS Business School .

The Labor party is of the opinion that Australia could now witness the next Great Depression, post the 1930s.The government makes it clear, given the situations, that it is working out a plan to aid workers who might be affected by such recession.

So what can possible happen to the 50,000 people, come 2017?

Research studies, purely academic, suggest that one-third of the total unemployed by this turn of events in the car manufacturing sector, will never work again. However there could be some hope for several others, according to Professor Roy Green, the Dean of the Business School at the University of Technology, Sydney.

“We should have recognised some time ago that the future of assembly manufacture in car making was limited and we should have prepared for this day.” “We didn’t, but we still have time to organise a successful transition for the workers involved, for the industry and indeed for the future of Australian manufacturing,” he says.

Many politicians, like Federal Labor MP Kelvin Thomson, feel that there needs to be restrictions on the surge of foreign workers and jobless locals should be given opportunities first.

How to defuse hackers

Technology can often have its own disadvantages: vulnerability to cyber threats and of course hackers is definitely one of them. This has begun to apply to car technologies as well. Vehicle security is crucial and car companies want to ensure that hackers are kept away from their customers.

Tesla Motors in this respect has begun hiring the best hackers in the industry who will be outperforming ones who are not the best hackers in the respective industry. This means that hackers not related to the automotive industry, will not be able to crack codes easily, anymore. The recent programming conference attended by the company (Def Con security conference) in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA was in line with its hacker recruit. Kristin Page, Tesla’s security expert, recruited the automotive industry’s best talent. He was inclined to employ binary code-adroit tech experts.

There arises a possible question as to why is Tesla losing its sleep over this?

Two incidents sparked off such aggressive hire.

In the first case, a Model S owner was able to crack into his own car’s systems and access a non-standardized web browser on the car’s large, 17 inch display central screen. Somehow, Tesla was warned of the incident and ended up sending a warning letter to the car owner, regarding suspension of the vehicle’s warranty if such activities persisted. The customer did comply but this definitely raised some issues.

In the second, one of the most bizarre incidents, a Chinese tech conference called SyScan put up a cash prize of $10,000 challenging tech nerds to hack into the Model S’s computer system to take control of some major and significant functions of the car make. In this contest, one group managed to remotely activate the car’s headlights, horn, and sunroof. Needless to mention , that Tesla was in real anguish. It wanted to secure its electronically dependent vehicles, at the earliest.

Bypassing the computer firewall of the Model S may be more damaging than a non-standardized web browser or let’s say an unruly sunroof. Tesla is a rolling computer that sends updates to the car through the web and this makes it vulnerable to be remotely located, and controlled partially by way of a simple laptop.

Tesla has begun believing in the “know your enemy approach” and is certainly trying to look at preventing hackers from wirelessly taking command on its electronically potent vehicles.

Caution Needed Say IDTechEx Analysts

Launches of fuel cell cars are reportedly planned by up to six carmakers from 2015 including Tata Motors of India, owners of Jaguar Land Rover. They are portrayed as pivotal in creating success for pure electric cars but the truth is very different. More is explained in the IDTechEx report Future Technology for Hybrid and Pure Electric Cars 2015-2025.
Toyota has been the first to declare its hand with full details of its contribution the Mirai. People listen to Toyota because it is way ahead as leader in EVs overall with sales about four times those of number two according to analysts IDTechEx. It was right to say that affordable pure-electric cars using batteries were not ready for prime time and right to persevere with hybrids. It knows about pure electric vehicles: it is global leader in pure electric forklifts.
However, Toyota is wrongly reported as “betting the shop” on fuel cell cars. Indeed, a managing director of Toyota Satoshi Ogiso has joked that their Chairman Mr Takeshi Uchiyamada, who was behind the hugely successful Prius hybrid during its ten wilderness years and is behind their fuel cells, is now a Don Quixote figure.
Fuel cell rollout projects across the world are actually extremely cautious and modest. For example, the European HyFive program involves Toyota, BMW, Daimler, Honda and Hyundai. It only aims to get 110 fuel cell vehicles on the road by contributing $45 million.
Progress is still slow, following the invention of the fuel cell in 1839 and Honda having arguably the first production fuel cell car the FCX Clarity and the Toyota FCEV Highlander appearing in 2008, only tiny numbers being deployed. Indeed, IDTechEx puts fuel cell cars at only 1% of all hybrid and pure electric cars sold worldwide in 2024.
Franco Gonzalez, EV analyst at IDTechEx explains, “Fuel cells will not be competitive with conventional engines in up-front cost for at least 15 years. Indeed, they need very expensive new hydrogen fuelling infrastructure in addition.”
He continues, “The Germans may achieve that and the Californians are sprinkling 100 across the state by 2017 but that still means frequent diversions into further grid-locked roads to find the stuff. Fuel cells could eventually make sense for fleets such as forklifts and buses because providing their hydrogen refue?ling is trivial, given their fixed routes. Indeed, fuel cells are in about 8000 forklifts in the USA where hydrogen is cheaper. Reduced cost of ownership and no local pollution could become market drivers in closed systems”.
“While it is commendable that fuel cell car production costs have tumbled to the order of $100,000 each, that is still a long way from being competitive. Therefore we are not surprised that the Toyota Mirai fuel cell car, costing a premium $57,000 in the USA and £63,104 in the UK before grants, is constrained to test levels of only 700 worldwide in 2015 despite initial orders for 1500. Only about 2,000 units will be very expensively made in 2016 and approximately 3,000 units in 2017 – then only tens of thousands in the 2020s, says Toyota”.
“So far, compared to a regular car, the fuel cell car offers bottom end range of only 300 miles, unimpressive acceleration and fuel cost, probably a poor resale price and diversion to refuel with the hydrogen from non-sustainable sources (just as electricity and gasoline to charge cars usually comes from non-sustainable sources). The Toyota Mirai is very much a work in progress with its poor headroom in the back due to passengers sitting on the large hydrogen tanks. Many find it ugly due to the huge air scoops at the front for the extra radiators cooling the fuel cell”.

Transmission Control Units

Modern day cars are offered with both Automatic and Manual Transmission as per the customer choice. In comparison to manual transmission, automatic transmissions enhance the driving comfort and also fuel efficient as it independently determines the point where engines run most efficiently. There are various aspects to discuss about the Advancement of Technology in Transmission Control Units.

Going High-tech: Modern Transmission Control Units are designed to meet high precision digital intelligence in order to find out engine’s ideal operating point, the control unit posses high-tech computer enabling complex operation of various kinds of automatic transmission systems.  The processing speed of a modern transmission unit is incredibly faster than the computers used in the lunar mission.

Conventional Automatic: A conventional automatic transmission uses various programs stored in the control unit to shift the gears. Most of cars are equipped with a switch strategically placed on the steering helping the drivers to shift gears avoiding errors and adds precision transmission power. Most common conventional transmission is designed with 6 gears though some ultra-efficient versions are designed with 9 gears.

Automated Manual Transmission: An Automated Manual Transmission, abbreviated as AMT, is a combination of manual and automatic transmission. It offers the best of comfort and convenience of an automatic with an individual control of manual transmission. The clutch opens during the idling condition and utilizes the energy generated when it’s closed. This transmission drastically reduces carbon emissions and saves fuel in the process.

Dual Clutch Automated Transmission: This type of transmission comprises two separate transmissions. One is used for even gear shift and other one for odd gear shift. Both clutches shift back and forth between the transmissions within a fraction of second, allowing precision gear shift. The complex coordination in a dual clutch transmission is possible due to sophisticated transmission control system by a powerful processing.

Continuously Variable Transmission: Abbreviated as CVT, used without any shifting points that completely eliminates shifting response delays. As result, allowing the driver to accelerate accurately without any interruptions as the driving force is available all the times. The vehicle does not even shift back and forth between fixed shifting points, a feature most essential during steep inclines. CVT is widespread in Asia and North American markets.

e-Clutch: An e-Clutch provides the comfort of any automated to a manual transmission in a cost effective way.  Drivers can shift into gear one by just stepping into gas pedal, the e-Clutch automates the clutch but not the transmission. The clutch pedal produces an electrical signal and sends it to the actuator, which decouples the clutch. This affordable transmission acts as an alternative to a fully automated transmission essentially useful for the drivers of compact cars who find themselves in a stop and go traffic within the urban spheres.