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Newsroom - 2019 ETF Design Competition Winners Announced
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Nancy Molenda


Winners in the 2019 Aluminum Extrusion Design Competition

May 14, 2019; Chicago, Illinois– The ET Foundation has announce the winners of the 2019 Aluminum Extrusion Design Competition. More than 90 students from high schools and universities around the world submitted entries for the opportunity to receive a cash scholarship sponsored exclusively by Bonnell Aluminum totaling $8,500.

The ET Foundation welcomed David Asher, Process Optimization Manager for Bonnell Aluminum; Dr. Joseph Benedyk, Editor of Light Metal Age magazine and aluminum industry veteran; and Todd Boyer, Director of Sales & Marketing for Mid-States Aluminum as the 2019 Design Competition judges.

The following students were recognized for designs that showcased the versatility and advantages of aluminum extrusions:

First Place ($3,000 Scholarship): NEST BED – Bed for Refugee Camps by Åse Lilly Salamonsen from The Oslo School of Architecture and Design; Oslo, Norway
This modular bed system includes two main extruded components – the corner piece and the side rails, as well as the nylon fabric cloth that acts as the mattress—which is attached with a spring mechanism from the corner extruded profile.

“This clever design uses a compact erector set concept for construction of the bed,” said competition judge Todd Boyer.

Competition judge David Asher commented, “This was a contender for the Sustainable Design Award but we felt this student’s idea deserved First Place,” in regard to the details and overall concept of Salamonsen’s design that was both timely and relevant to the current global refugee crisis.
Second Place ($2,000 Scholarship): STORM SHIELD – Hurricane Shutter System by Kenny Adams, Benjamin Siperek, Matthew Retault, and James Jaraczewski from Texas A&M University; College Station, Texas

This Texas A&M team chose to lower the cost of production for hurricane window/door protection options while offering an elegant solution to high wind protection. “The extruded pieces we created apply pressure to the upper and lower window/door frame, as a result, the compression created will allow the system to support plywood or sheet metal. This design allows for quick and easy installation letting the homeowner install the system with no mistake.”

Competition judge Dr. Joseph Benedyk commented, “This product solves a real problem and there is a big market for it. It appears lightweight, collapsible, and quick and easy to install.”

Competition judge David Asher was inspired by his own experiences with hurricane protection, commenting, “It would take me a day-and-a-half to get my hurricane protection in place… This product would reduce installation time significantly and it doesn’t need to stay on the windows like other more expensive systems.”
Third Place ($1,000): LOFT – Lifting equipment for use in sea rescues by Kristoffer Steen Langvik from The Oslo School of architecture and Design; Oslo, Norway
Langvik explains his entry “aims to use the high strength and corrosion resistant properties of aluminum to provide a tool for people in dangerous situations. It requires minimal post processing and is made up of two different profiles, making it an economical and practical solution to [sea] rescue.”

The design takes into consideration the needs of its operators during rescues while also remaining compact for storage purposes, allowing rescuers to access and store the equipment quickly and efficiently.

The judges were impressed with the creative use of extrusions in this design, commenting specifically on Langvik’s choice of specified aluminum alloy, “The 5052 (2.5% Mg) alloy is extrudable and is one of the non-heat treatable alloys offered… in extruded form, especially for marine applications due to its superior corrosion resistance relative to 6xxx alloys,” said judge Dr. Joseph Benedyk.

Sustainable Design ($2,500):– Space-saving Greenhouse by Johanna Sofie Brämersson from The Oslo School of Architecture & Design; Oslo, Norway
The Bonnell Sustainable Design Challenge is awarded to the student who best displays an understanding in utilizing aluminum extrusions in a viable, environment-friendly manner that contributes to the quality of life for its intended users. This year’s winner, Johanna Sofie Brämersson, explains that the space-saving greenhouse system “makes it simple for people to get together and grow in small spaces like rooftops and courtyards.” Her design allows for growing optimization and improves efficiency with compost containers along with aluminum profile rails for LED light strips.

Brämersson goes on to explain important advantages of using aluminum extrusions: “The 6063 aluminum alloy gives the greenhouse a high resistance against all kinds of weather and doesn’t corrode much, which gives it a long service life and a low environmental impact.”

Honorable Mention:Tool-changing Pen Plotter by Joshua Vasquez from University of Washington
Joshua Vasquez received an honorable mention from the Design Competition judges for his use of extrusions and open design which is explained by Vasquez, “The Tool-changing Pen Plotter is my answer for a future world where 3D printers transform into multipurpose motion platforms.” He goes on further to explain, “it is intended as a reference design for machine builders eager to create multipurpose machines with many heads.”

In the spirit of the maker community, Vasquez published his design in open spaces for any creator to use for their own designs and machines. This willingness to eagerly and earnestly share work is what convinced competition judges to recognize Vasquez’s concept. “Although the design that he has built uses basic extruded shapes for a platform, that’s the point of this machine – to use materials that are readily available in order for anyone to build their own version,” commented competition judge David Asher. “I really like what the student has done here. It took a lot of ingenuity to build it and we wanted to recognize that.”

Vasquez shows the design in action on his website.

All of the winning 2019 Aluminum Extrusion Design Competition entries, as well as previous student and professional winners, are available on

The 2020 Aluminum Extrusion Design Competition will be opened to both students and professionals. The competition was created to inspire and enlighten current and future designers, architectures, and engineers to design unique products or systems using aluminum extrusions. Winners of the 2020 competition will be displayed during the Twelfth International Aluminum Extrusion Technology Seminar (ET ’20) taking place May 19-21, 2020 in Orlando, FL. Call for entries for the 2020 Aluminum Extrusion Design Competition will be announced Fall 2019. For announcements about the upcoming design competition, please visit and


About the ET Foundation
The Extrusion Technology for Aluminum Profiles Foundation has been established for charitable, scientific, and educational purposes to develop, promote, provide, and fund education and research related to aluminum extrusion processes and technologies. For more information, contact the ET Foundation mail@etfoundation.orgor visit

About AEC
The Aluminum Extruders Council (AEC) is a progressive trade association dedicated to advancing the effective use of aluminum extrusion in North America. AEC is committed to bringing comprehensive information about extrusion's characteristics, applications, environmental benefits, design and technology to users, product designers, engineers and the academic community. Further, AEC is focused on enhancing the ability of its members to meet the emerging demands of the market through sharing knowledge and best practices. For more information, visit

About Bonnell Aluminum
Bonnell Aluminum is a subsidiary of Richmond, VA, based Tredegar Corporation. With operations in Newnan, GA, Carthage, TN, Niles, MI, Elkhart IN, and Clearfield, UT, the company produces custom fabricated and finished aluminum extrusions for nonresidential building and construction, automotive and specialty markets. Learn more at