Norsk Titanium’s Plattsburgh Facility Will Be the World’s First Industrial-Scale Aerospace Additive Manufacturing Facility
Towards the end of last year, Norway-based Norsk Titanium got people talking here in the US when they announced their plan to build a giant, multi-million-dollar additive manufacturing plant in Plattsburgh, New York, greatly expanding their business and creating lots of new jobs. This week, the company released new details about the planned facility, and yes, it’s going to be big – and it’s going to involve big money. Norsk plans to invest $1 billion into the facility over the next 10 years, and the State of New York has invested $125 million.
What’s more, according to Norsk, the facility will be the world’s first industrial-scale aerospace additive manufacturing plant. Aerospace is one of the company’s prime areas of focus, and in the second quarter of 2015 they shipped 2.4 metric tons of titanium aerospace parts for certification testing – thanks to their patented Rapid Plasma Deposition (RPD) technology, which involves melting titanium wire in a set of plasma torches surrounded by argon, producing parts with the equivalent strength of forgings at a fraction of the cost and time required. The State of New York has already invested in 20 of Norsk Titanium’s MERKE IV RPD machines, in addition to releasing $4 million for the facility’s construction thus far.
“Norsk will do a couple of things: One, it will infuse our economy with up to 400 good-paying jobs,” Plattsburgh Town Supervisor Michael Cashman, who described the RPD technology as “magical” to watch, told WPTZ.com. “The other part to it is, this company is the first in the world, as far as the products its producing, so it continues to put our region on the map…Plattsburgh is already on the move and some great things are going to unfold in the weeks, months and years to come.”
The MERKE IV has been in development for 10 years, and it’s expected to save millions of dollars in not only aerospace production, but in automotive and naval manufacturing as well.
“Today marks the beginning of a new era in the way aircraft, marine vessels, automobiles, spacecraft and many industrial products are designed and built,” said Norsk Titanium President & Chief Executive Officer Warren M. Boley, Jr. “Not only are we creating jobs, huge economic impact and great visibility for the wider Plattsburgh community, we are also making history by kicking off a new phase of on-demand, near-net-shape manufacturing that sets a new benchmark of efficiency and customer responsiveness.”
The plant is expected to be operational by the end of 2017, and it will open in partnership with the SUNY Polytechnic Institute. The first 20 MERKE IV machines are expected to produce 400 metric tons of aerospace-grade structural titanium components, and Norsk anticipates ultimately doubling those amounts to 40 machines and 800 metric tons of parts.
In addition to the job creation and economic development provided by the production facility, Norsk Titanium will also impact the Plattsburgh region through workforce training and STEM outreach programs at SUNY Polytechnic along with other community colleges and schools in the area, with the support of the North Country Chamber of Commerce.
Currently, Norsk Titanium is exhibiting a full-scale mock-up of the MERKE IV at the Farnborough International Airshow, which is running from July 11-15 in Farnborough, England. Discuss further in the Norsk 3D Printing Facility forum over at 3DPB.com.
You May Also Like
Kawasaki’s 3D Printed Spare Part Flown to Ship via Drone
One of the few businesses tackling the world of maritime 3D printing is Wilhelmsen, one of the largest businesses in the maritime sector, along with its partners, such as steel...
Saab Test Flies 3D Printed Replacement Part for Gripen Fighter Jet
While 3D printed spares are seeing increasing use in rail transport, it is now seeing deployment in an even more high-performance application: the repair of fighter jets. Swedish military firm...
SOLIZE Using HP to 3D Print Car Parts for Nissan’s NISMO
Japanese CAD and 3D printing company SOLIZE will be using HP 3D printers to make out-of-production spare parts for NISMO, the tuning and motorsport division of Nissan. SOLIZE is a...
Italian Trolleybusses Get 3D Printing Treatment with On-Demand Spares
3D printing is playing an increasing role in the production of spare parts for public transportation and mass transit, particularly in countries outside of the U.S., where those sectors are...
View our broad assortment of in house and third party products.