Metal additive manufacturing specialist Amaero International is to source an aluminium-scandium alloy for 3D printing from mining giant Rio Tinto.
The alloy, the first commercial batch of the high performance alloy sold by Rio, will be processed by Amaero into powder for 3D printing and offered to the market for high temperature applications.
The alloy billets will be made of low carbon aluminium from its hydro-powered Canadian smelters and high purity scandium oxide from its Rio Tinto Fer et Titane (RTFT) metallurgical complex in Sorel-Tracy, Quebec.
The Sorel-Tracy plant, which is is under construction, will use an innovative recovery process developed by Rio Tinto to extract high purity scandium oxide from the waste streams of titanium dioxide production.
The companies will also collaborate to develop the supply chain for Amaero’s high performance, High Operating Temperature Aluminium Alloy, “Amaero HOT Al”, and commercialise this lightweight material for applications in the aerospace, defence and other industries.
Rio Tinto Aluminium vice president Tolga Egrilmezer said: “Aluminium-scandium alloy is the material of choice where a lightweight, high-strength material with thermal resistance and good welding properties is needed, such as for defence and aerospace applications.
“This first sale demonstrates our ability to develop products that meet our customers’ needs, drawing on our technical expertise and world class assets.”
Amaero chief executive officer Barrie Finnin said the agreement with Rio was an important step in the commercialisation of a high performance alloy.”
Picture: Amaero International
Subscribe to our free @AuManufacturing newsletter here.