15 Oct Casting the Future Kit
Pam Murrell, CEO of the Cast Metals Federation, was recently able to present a Casting the Future Kit to Martin Dudley of Thomas Dudley Ltd. “We lend the kit to our member foundries to enable them to demonstrate casting as a route to manufacture to school children or to young people at college or university” Pam explains, “so that they can learn about how things are made.
“The castings industry is a very important part of the circular economy, as our foundries recycle the scrap metal from parts at end of life, to make new metal components that then go into electric vehicles, public transport infrastructure, medical equipment or offshore wind farms. And for young people who want to be part of a sector that is making a difference in the circular economy and enabling metal recycling, or who like problem solving and working with their hands, then hopefully it can also encourage them to consider apprenticeships in the industry.
“The kit is self-contained and very scale-able, and needs no specialist labs or facilities to use it” said Pam, “and youngsters can be encouraged to carry out design projects and even produce patterns using 3D printing if they, or the foundry, has access to CAD and additive manufacturing equipment. Then these design ideas can then be cast using the kit, or scaled-up for the foundry to make. Plus the kit can also link into the science and maths curricula, so topics like phase change, yield calculations and design for manufacture can be incorporated.
Martin Dudley, Chairman of Thomas Dudley Ltd agreed, “I am sure we shall make use of the kit as part of our already strong programme of support for the local community. We welcome over 600 children to our sites in any year; our support of educational establishments has recently helped Dudley Academy Trust to start a plastic recycling project and 120 children from a local school to trial alternatives to traditional work experience. We have equipped our Head Office with a visitor centre and interactive showroom, which helps all visitors to Thomas Dudley, but especially the young students that attend throughout the year, to better understand manufacturing, and this gives them an invaluable insight before they go on tour to our foundry and plastics divisions.”