The materials wars in the aircraft industry are heating up. Allegheny Technologies Inc. introduced its new titanium ATI 425 Alloy to the commercial aerospace industry at this year’s Farnborough International Air Show, held near London, UK. The Company’s display featured several products made from the new alloy including continuously cold-rolled titanium sheet, formed plate, and prototype aerospace fasteners.
Alcan launched a new lightweight aluminum alloy at the air show as Boeing flew in a composite-bodied Dreamliner 787 in its international air show debut.
A new compression molding compound material combines the light weight, strength, and rigidity of carbon fibers with the flexibility and lower cost of glass materials in a composite compatible with automotive production.
Plastic bearings are real and millions of them are in use doing heavy-duty jobs we used to think only metals could do. Some of Germany-based igus's bearings are traveling around the world as functional parts in a car to demonstrate what they can do.
Baxter showed off his 2.0-derived moves at ATX West this year. The big red guy still looks pretty much the same, but has some new abilities, mostly due to software. The research robot version is now being used in corporate R&D departments as a design platform.
End-production using 3D printing, including objects made of multiple materials in one pass, is getting closer to reality as we saw on the exhibit floor at the recent Pacific Design & Manufacturing Show.