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Design Competition: 2020 Professional Winners

Professional Class
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2020 Aluminum Extrusion Design Competition Winners

The 2020 International Aluminum Extrusion Design Competition attracted 25 professional entries and nearly 130 student entries from more than 18 countries around the world. The ET Foundation and the Aluminum Extruders Council congratulate the winners and thank all of the professional and student designers who submitted an entry, with special thanks to the students’ faculty advisors for advancing aluminum extrusion education by supporting the Competition through the classroom.

The entries were reviewed and evaluated by aluminum extrusion industry professionals, including David Asher, Process Optimization Manager for Bonnell Aluminum in Newnan, GA; Todd Boyer, Director of Sales & Marketing for Mid-States Aluminum in Fond du Lac, WI; and Dr. Joseph Benedyk, Editor of Light Metal Age magazine and aluminum industry veteran.

To learn more about how the aluminum extrusion industry supports schools, visit the Academic Engagement page on this website. And, be sure to follow the ET Foundation International Aluminum Extrusion Design Competition Facebook page at www.facebook.com/AlExtDesignCompetition for news and information about future competitions.

Structural Category - $2,000

GUARDECK Aluminum Bridge Deck

Alexandre de la Chevriotiere
MAADI Group, Inc. Montreal, QC Canada

Entry Details >>

Transportation Category - $2,000

VAST RV Camping Trailer

Ryan Bush
Sylvan Sport

Entry Details >>

Transportation Category - $2,000

Marc Senger, Industrial Designer

Extruded Utility Grid System - Gridflex Light Utility Truck

Entry Details >>

Structural Category - $2,000

GUARDECK Aluminum Bridge Deck

Alexandre de la Chevriotiere
MAADI Group, Inc. Montreal, QC Canada

An all-extruded aluminum bridge deck won the Structural Category earning $2,000 for Alexandre de la Chevriotiere of MAADI Group, Inc. in the Professional Aluminum Extrusion Design Competition. Their GuarDECK system maximizes functionality and minimizes environmental impacts with a pedestrian walkway built onto a new or existing bridge, providing safe access for pedestrians and bicyclists, reducing traffic congestion, according to the designer. The system can be used in new and retrofit construction projects.

GuarDECK uses Accelerated Bridge Construction (ABC) principles with weld-free and off-the-shelf components, which can be shipped in bundles on short notice. GuarDECK “attaches to steel main girders without any need of drilling or welding on site thanks to extrusions,” noted Chevriotiere.

The bridge components are made of “marine grade”, 6000-series extruded aluminum and the system is prefabricated and shipped to install with standard manual tools. Nine different extrusions are used with integrated LED lights incorporated in the clear anodized guardrail system, adding beauty to the patented system. A team can install the weld-free aluminum deck and open the bridge to traffic later that same day, fitting well in most environments and situations where durability and rapid installation are top priority, explained the designer. The GuraDECK system is ideal for numerous uses, including pedestrian, 15-ton vehicle, temporary, military, industrial and more. The bridge deck can also extend a roadway bridge for us as a cantilevered bike path.

Chevriotiere notes that “aluminum bridge decks are 70-80 percent lighter than concrete and most metal, which makes it easier to handle and install. This lightweight, versatile material reduces dead load and offers increased bridge width and capacity without the need to strengthen supporting bridge elements. This is especially important for load-restricted bridges, historic bridges, moveable bridges and bridges with narrow roadways requiring expansions for bicycle paths or walkways.”

“This is a creative and practical use of extrusions,” said competition judge Todd Boyer. “A lot of bridge rebuilds are needed, especially in this country. This product would be a quick, easy and durable solution to pedestrian and light vehicle bridge replacements or retrofits.”

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Transportation Category - $2,000

VAST RV Camping Trailer

Ryan Bush
Sylvan Sport

Building on their success with the GO camper/trailer, a Grand Prize winner in the 2008 Aluminum Extrusion Design Competition, Sylvan Sport developed the VAST RV camping trailer with extensive use of aluminum extrusions. A first for the RV industry, according to the company, an innovative all-seasons kitchen allows the camper to enjoy cooking meals indoors or outdoors with their patented easy slide technology. The side-mounted rack system features extruded aluminum built-in rails that turn the entire side of the R/V into storage for kayaks, canoes or paddleboards. Protected storage for propane tanks, batteries and a spare tie is mounted on the front with a front pod that slides forward on extruded aluminum rails.

The entire back opens for easy loading of gear and for weather protection. The inside is equipped with residential queen-sized beds. One bed drops down from the ceiling using a motorized lift system. The second converts from the lounge’s premium cushions for easy set-up and maximum comfort, according to the company’s website.

“The VAST is made up of composite panels, which are completely aligned and held together using aluminum extrusions,” noted Bush. “The aluminum extrusions allow us to keep the total weight under 3,500 lbs. while maximizing strength for durability and road safety.” He elaborated, “The extrusions play a major role in the exterior styling, but they also function as practical wire chases and waterproofing mechanisms. We also make use of aluminum extrusions for tracks, which our lounge slides along, lighting systems, and exterior tracks for kayak racks.”

A 15-foot-long, 8-inch-tall extrusion clamps down on the roof panel and locks tightly into a vertical extrusion to keep the box aligned. The outer shell is constructed using a custom composite skin, laminated to an insulated wall structure, which in turn are joined to the proprietary extruded aluminum frame. The corners are double-capped for maximum waterproof protection.

The judges appreciated the creative and multifunctional uses for the extruded profiles in the design, which shows off the versatility of aluminum extrusions. “The VAST uses materials which will last for decades, minimizing the environmental impact with typical, semi-disposable RVs create,” noted Bush.

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Transportation Category - $2,000

Marc Senger, Industrial Designer

Extruded Utility Grid System - Gridflex Light Utility Truck

Marc Senger, an Industrial Design professional, located in Weymouth, MA, designed an extruded aluminum universal mounting system for light utility vehicles, which earned him a $2,000 prize in the Transportation Category—one of two prizes awarded in the category this year. The mounting system is designed to “enhance contractors’ abilities to adapt their vehicle to a multiplicity of functional needs,” Senger explained in his entry materials. “Extrusions allow high-strength yet lightweight features, which accept ‘task modules’, which may be repositioned anywhere along the extrusion. This allows ultimate flexibility when outfitting and using the vehicle.”

His GRIDFLEX Versatile Light Utility Vehicle utilizes the grid system, which includes a variety of features suited for the diversity of applications by contractors, including a slide-out workbench, convertible cargo roof, a two-stage cargo floor for easier cargo loading/unloading, a low-profile extruded sliding chassis that houses the electric drivetrain and batteries, and an electrically powered grid to power the accessories anywhere along the entire system.

The judges appreciated Senger’s creativity and imagination in designing this vehicle and grid system; however, it may be impractical in today’s automotive design environment. Still, his design pushes the envelope for how vehicles are designed.

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