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Altair Names Finalists Of Enlighten Award For Auto 'Lightweighting'

TROY (WWJ) -- Altair Tuesday announced 10 nominations for the inaugural Altair Enlighten Award competition.

The award, presented in collaboration with the Center for Automotive Research, is the automotive industry's first award program created specifically to acknowledge innovations in vehicle light-weighting. The winner will be announced during the opening session "Global Manufacturing Strategies" of the 2013 CAR Management Briefing Seminars, Aug. 5 from 8 a.m. to noon. The award ceremony precedes the afternoon session, "Featherweight Competition: The Path to a Lightweight Car."

The Altair Enlighten Award aims to recognize achievements in weight reduction across the automotive industry, from motorcycles to passenger cars, light trucks to commercial vehicles and buses. The 2013 Award nominees are:

ArcelorMittal – Industry's first hot stamped laser welded door ring by Honda, ArcelorMittal and MAGNA - Cosma International
Autoliv – Optimization of a vehicle steering wheel by Suzuki Maruti, Autoliv
Automotive International Services – Development of a one-piece plastic cargo van partition
BASF – Development of a thermoplastic composite front seat pan by GM Opel, BASF
 Henkel AG – Design and manufacture of composite leaf springs by Mercedes, Henkel AG, Benteler-SGL
Honda R&D – The all-new 2014 Acura MDX chassis system
Mack Trucks /  Volvo – Development of the twin Y rear suspension system
Mahindra & Mahindra – Optimization of a vehicle body-in-white structure
Mahindra & Mahindra – Optimization of an engine crankcase structure
Plasan Carbon Composites – Development of a carbon fiber roof for the 2013 Viper GTS by Chrysler Fiat, Plasan Carbon Composites

Each of these entries demonstrates a unique approach to meet the challenges of automotive weight reduction through the use of innovative design processes. The award's judging committee, chaired by Jay Baron, president and CEO of CAR, and director of CAR's Coalition for Automotive Lightweighting Materials, is comprised of worldwide experts from the automotive community, who will now assess the nominations and choose the overall winner.

"The automotive industry is striving to lower vehicle weight to deliver ever more fuel efficient and high performance vehicles to market," said Giuseppe Resta, Manager of Global Automotive for Altair. "From the innovative use of design optimization technologies to lightweight metal structures, to pioneering and yet affordable applications of composite and plastic materials, these nominees represent diverse solutions to lower vehicle weight.

"Although this is the first year of the Altair Enlighten Award competition, we've been very encouraged by the response from the industry," said Resta. "Not only will the competition reward individual companies that have pursued innovative design solutions to meet their engineering challenges, but we also hope that sharing information about these projects at MBS will help to benefit the automotive industry as a whole."

The Altair Enlighten Award is intended to honor the greatest achievements in weight savings each year; to inspire interest from industry, engineering, policymakers, educators, students and the public; to create further competition for new ideas in the industry; and to provide an incentive to share technological advances.

The award aligns with the goals of CAR's CALM initiative to support the cost-effective integration of mixed materials to achieve significant reductions in vehicle mass through the collaborative efforts of the material sectors and auto manufacturers.

The Center for Automotive Research is a non-profit organization based in Ann Arbor, Mich. Its mission is to conduct research on significant issues related to the future direction of the global automotive industry, organize and conduct forums of value to the automotive community, and foster industry relationships. For more information, visit the CAR website: To register for the CAR Management Briefing Seminars, visit

With a 28-year track record for high-end software for engineering and computing, enterprise analytics solutions, and innovative product design and development, Altair consistently delivers a competitive advantage to customers in a broad range of industries. To learn more, please visit or

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