Spirit Aerosystems, an aerospace manufacturer with a revenue of $6.8 billion in 2016, has announced a commercial partnership with Norsk Titanium for its proprietary 3D printed titanium technology and will look into incorporating Norsk Titanium’s 3D printing method (known as Rapid Plasma Deposition) into its own aerospace manufacturing processes.
As a leading manufacturer of aerostructures, primarily producing fuselages, pylons, nacelles and wing components, Spirit Aerosystems manufactures a number of structural components for its primary aerospace clients Boeing and Airbus. Still operating with conventional machining processes, the company is keen to expand and advance its workflow and integrate innovative additive manufacturing technology in its own processes.
“WE ARE PLEASED TO ENTER INTO THIS INNOVATIVE COMMERCIAL AGREEMENT WITH NORSK TITANIUM TO FABRICATE COMPLIANT AND HIGH-QUALITY PARTS FOR OUR CUSTOMERS.” – Tom Gentile, President & CEO of Spirit Aerosystems
Rapid Plasma Deposition (RPD), Norsk Titanium’s 3D printing method, uses wire feedstock to build up near net shape parts that require minor post-machining. This innovative additive manufacturing process has recently found aerospace application of its own with Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner aircraft. Boeing’s Dreamliner will be the first commercial airplane to fly with certified additive manufactured titanium parts in structural applications. The RPD technology promises product cost reductions of up to 30%, as well as reducing both energy and waste, and is having an increased demand from the aerospace industry.
“WE RECENTLY ANNOUNCED BECOMING THE WORLD’S FIRST FAA-APPROVED 3D-PRINTED STRUCTURAL TITANIUM PROVIDER AND SPIRIT IS THE IDEAL TIER-ONE AEROSTRUCTURES PARTNER TO LEVERAGE THIS PIONEERING CAPABILITY.” – Warren Boley, Norsk Titanium CEO