Norsk Titanium AS, Oslo, Norway, has completed testing of its Rapid Plasma Deposition™ (RPD™) material with Thales Alenia Space, the Franco-Italian joint venture between Thales Group and Leonardo SpA, to develop, produce and test components for use in spaceflight.
Under a contract signed in 2016, Norsk Titanium collaborated with Thales Alenia Space to develop, produce and test an initial qualification component. Under the terms of the test plan, Norsk Titanium evaluated the suitability of their RPD material to replace near-net shape forgings for spaceflight applications. Norsk Titanium confirmed that mechanical testing had been completed and the RPD material performed in accordance with the mutually developed requirements.
“Norsk Titanium is delighted to mature our relationship with Thales Alenia Space,” stated Norsk Titanium CEO Warren M. Boley Jr. “Along with our recent commercial aerospace successes, this provides further evidence that Norsk Titanium’s Rapid Plasma Deposition material is ready to support the stringent requirements of the in-space market, revolutionising how the industry incorporates titanium into their critical designs.”
Successful completion of this testing has positioned Norsk Titanium to be a leading supplier of structural additive manufactured components for the Thales Alenia Space product lines. Adoption of RPD material allows Thales Alenia Space to improve program performance, cutting current part buy-to-fly ratios in half and reducing lead-times by six months.
“Thales Alenia Space is very pleased to confirm that the Rapid Plasma Deposition solution from Norsk Titanium was successfully tested from a mechanical point of view. Thales Alenia Space builds larger and larger material parts using additive manufacturing, which represents an important advance during the fabrication phase”, explained Florence Montredon, Additive Manufacturing Technology Development manager at Thales Alenia Space.
Norsk Titanium’s Rapid Plasma Deposition process uses titanium wire to produce complex components suitable for structural and safety-critical applications. The company is a tier-1 supplier to Boeing and states that RPD is the world’s first FAA-approved, AM structural titanium, delivering substantial lead-time and cost savings for aerospace, defence and commercial customers.