Norsk Titanium AS, supplier of aerospace-grade, additive manufactured, structural titanium components has recently signed a contract with Thales Alenia Space, the joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo-Finmeccanica (33%) to develop, produce and test components for use in spaceflight.
Under the terms of the order, Norsk Titanium will collaborate with Thales Alenia Space to develop and produce an initial qualification lot of titanium components in 2016 in support of a joint test and acceptance program for spaceflight. Following the successful qualification process, Norsk Titanium expects to begin full rate production of Thales Alenia Space components in 2017. Each component has a final mass of more than 3 kilograms and changing over to Rapid Plasma Deposition™ cuts the current part buy-to-fly ratio in half and reduces lead-time by 6 months over incumbent forging processes. “We are thrilled to partner with Thales Alenia Space and to extend the benefits of Rapid Plasma Deposition™ from earth-based commercial airliners all the way into outer space,” said Norsk Titanium CEO Warren M. Boley Jr. “The space frontier is a great market for our titanium RPD™ parts since they are extremely fast to build, incredibly light, and can be used in applications of significant structural importance.”