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The Aluminum Material Council reviewed some future goals during the 2017 AAMA National Fall Conference, going over both short-term objectives, such as receiving regular reports from related organizations, as well as more long-term ones, including monitoring aluminum-specific energy code requirements with the Code Action Committee. The committee also discussed the falling sand abrasion test, salt spray tests, social media efforts and more. Work toward these goals and other aluminum-focused matters will be continued via conference calls leading up to the 2018 AAMA Annual Conference in Orlando, FL, February 19-22.

Council Fine-Tunes Strategic Objectives

Using the Fall Conference to put the finishing touches on strategic objectives for the coming years, the Aluminum Materials Council confirmed the following:

Short-term objectives (one to five years):

  • The two aluminum-related white papers addressing sustainability and energy performance of high-performing building enclosures are to be used as sources of information for the development of infographics to be promoted via social media (Twitter, Linkedin, Pinterest, etc.) The energy white paper, in particular, was featured in industry publications, specifically Construction Specifier and Retrofit, and members are asked to proactively share them via social media.
  • Semi-annual reports from the Aluminum Association (AA) and Aluminum Extruders Council (AEC) are to be added as standing meeting agenda items.
  • In addition to inviting AMC web page viewers to Council meetings, the means to facilitate participation will be promoted via meeting summaries, and an online “sign-up” form will be added to the site.
  • Aluminum statistics within the AAMA market research report, updated annually, will be presented by Ducker Research Company every other year at national conferences.

Long-term objectives (five to seven years):

  • Grow the recruitment of aluminum manufacturers and extruders. Members are encouraged to forward prospective member leads to the AAMA staff.
  • Energy and code requirements specific to aluminum will be monitored via the Code Action Committee.

Data Collection Should Look to Future Color Space Format Change

Following up on the recommendations of the Color Space Task Group, the AMC Finishes Committee (Chair: Carl Troiano [Trojan Powder Coatings]) determined that, within the aluminum finish standards, Hunter (vs. CIELAB) should remain the color space for defining color change effects under weathering due to the volume of historical data that has been compiled in that format.

It has also been determined that there has been no compelling evidence from the visual assessment studies that CIELAB yielded better results. However, members should begin collecting data in both Hunter and CIELAB formats so the switch can be made to the latter in the future. Aluminum finish standards will continue to use Hunter for the foreseeable future.

Falling Sand Abrasion Test Under Review

The Falling Sand Task Group has determined that, while an appropriate test to determine the abrasion resistance of organic coatings is desirable, there is variation between labs in the results of the current falling sand test (ASTM D968, Standard Test Methods for Abrasion Resistance of Organic Coatings by Falling Abrasive). While the test is useful for comparing the result of samples tested in the same lab and the same day, inter-lab comparisons are less useful.

Options being discussed for future direction include:

  • Eliminating the test in AAMA specifications
  • Fixing/improving the test to increase its accuracy
  • Recommending an alternative test, such as cupping

A related approach could be to create a standard panel with a reference coating and thickness. During the test, the test sample would have to meet or exceed the performance of the standard panel.

Material Council finish committees are being asked for further input on this topic.

Fiberglass Finish Standards Being Reviewed for Assistance with Updating Aluminum Finish Standards

The Accelerated Weathering Task Group (Chair: Scott Zimmerman [Atlas Material Testing]) is trying to identify appropriate accelerated weathering test(s) to include in AAMA’s aluminum finish standards. Since the AAMA Fiberglass Material Council did prior work on this topic, this AMC group decided to begin by reviewing FMC’s work to see if it could be applied to the aluminum documents. The Task Group has reviewed a number of accelerated weathering test options. A call is expected to be held after Thanksgiving to review a proposal for an accelerated weathering test and a test protocol.

Correlating Indoor Accelerated Corrosion Test with Outdoor Exposure

The AMC Pre-Treatment Task Group (Chair: Ben Mitchell [Akzo Nobel]) continued to review 2603 and 2604 test results to establish correlation to ASTM G85 accelerated weathering test as a replacement for ASTM B117 governing long-term outdoor weathering.

So far, correlation between the different pretreatments for the G85 cabinet tests and Battelle outdoor test site natural weathering is very close. Samples will continue to be weathered at the Battelle site until failures are experienced or at least until the 36-month exposure mark is achieved.

The goal is to compare, at the 2018 Annual Conference, the 2000-hour G85 results with the 36-month outdoor weathering to determine an appropriate number of hours of G85 testing to include in AAMA 2603 and 2604, in place of the ASTM B117 test.

Finish Applicator Quality Control Guidance Under Development

The AMC/FMC/WCCMC In-process Finish Applicator Quality Control Task Group (Co-Chairs: Manny Mayer [Axalta Coating Systems] and Ivan Zuniga [YKK AP America]) continues to work on developing a guidance document for in-process quality control for coatings applicators seeking to comply with AAMA 2603, 2604, 2605, 611, 612, 623, 624 and 625.

A draft based on the Third-Party Lamination Certification Task Group draft is currently under development. The first draft, balloted in September to the task group, received enough ballot responses but not enough approval votes. Comments will be resolved before a second draft is considered.

Social Media Recommendations

The AMC Marketing Committee (Chair: Josh Wignall [EFCO]) has compiled recommendations to maximize effective use of social media to share existing AMC resources. These include:

  • Engaging aluminum-focused magazines, associations and groups
  • Using hashtags to encourage people to search for posts on aluminum-related topics on the various social media platforms (#aluminumfact and #aluminum)
  • Using the hashtag #AMCprojects specifically for member projects/case studies on Twitter
  • Seeking opportunities to tag aluminum-focused groups/members to increase chance of re-tweets/likes/shares

Examples of timely topics to share are case studies, particularly regarding member projects that did well during the recent hurricane season. Topics for spring might include general maintenance on aluminum finishes and the AAMA care and maintenance brochure, now in the process of being updated. As mentioned in the short-term strategic objectives, infographics will also be created to share topics and ideas via social media.

Follow the activities of the council by visiting, where minutes from the Fall Conference will soon be posted.