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 self-propelled robot developed by a team of researchers headed by MIT promises to detect leaks quickly and accurately in gas pipelines, eliminating the likelihood of dangerous explosions. The robot may also be useful in water and petroleum pipe leak detection.
Aerojet Rocketdyne has built and successfully hot-fire tested an entire 3D-printed rocket engine. In other news, NASA's 3D-printed rocket engine injectors survived tests generating a record 20,000 pounds of thrust. Some performed equally well or better than welded parts.
Researchers at MIT's d'Arbeloff Laboratory are developing shoulder- and hip-mounted robotic arms to help workers in aircraft manufacturing perform difficult or complex assembly tasks that would normally require two people.
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