Abundant, endlessly recyclable and reusable, aluminium is vital to tomorrow’s lighter, faster, and more sustainable economy. Constellium knows that to innovate and achieve aluminium’s full potential demands the brightest experts, the greatest commitment, and significant investment. With more than 200 talented and highly qualified employees, our Technology Center is the driving force behind Constellium’s innovation and long-term growth.
Airware®:our most advanced aerospace solutions
Under the Airware® name, our aluminium-lithium alloys are the undisputed market leaders. The material of choice for military and space applications, no fewer than seven different Airware® alloys are flying today. Current applications include fuselage skins, stringers, floor structures and seat tracks, window frames, and large internal wing and fuselage components. Airware® is now fully industrialized with one pilot casting facility at C-TEC and two fully operational cast houses in Issoire, France.
Airware® lower density and improved material properties enable optimized structural designs, leading to an overall weight reduction and decrease in CO2 emissions. When combined with advance welding and redesign of aircraft aerostructure, Airware® delivers up to 25% weight reduction.
Building on its success, Constellium is expanding the Airware® portfolio with new additions:
- Airware® 2074, a high performance external fuselage sheet product offering a combination of low density and very high damage tolerance properties.
- A new Airware® external fuselage sheet product with very low density enabling direct substitution of current skin materials.
- Airware® 2065 and 2076, the latest high performance extruded solutions delivering improved performance for wing and fuselage structures.
Aluminium Powders for Additive Manufacturing
Aluminium Additive Manufacturing is gaining attention in many areas, especially in aerospace due to its potential to unconstraint the design limits of incumbent manufacturing processes. However, the lack of alloys designed specifically for AM that meet the high performance and strict quality requirements of the Aerospace market is currently limiting the potential of aluminium AM adoption.
Constellium, with a privileged metal supplier position in Aerospace and decades of knowledge in rapid solidification metallurgy, has developed two revolutionary additive manufacturing alloys that fit the needs of this technology-driven industry. These new products are perfectly aligned with the requirements of powder bed fusion and the performance requirements of aerospace components.
Aheadd® HT1 is the most suitable additive manufacturing alloy for applications which need high strength and service temperatures up to around 250°C.
The high thermal stability of Aheadd® HT1 makes it as an ideal choice to replace many titanium applications to reduce the component weight and cost. The higher thermal conductivity of aluminium over titanium may bring additional advantages.
Aheadd® CP1 is an additive manufacturing alloy packed with many features. Thermal and electrical conductivity approaching that of pure aluminium, high ductility and excellent surface finishing characteristics are the most visible ones. Aluminium AM heat exchangers are ideally suited to Aheadd® CP1.
This alloy is also a cost-effective alternative for almost every current AM application due to its very high printing speed and simplified post-processing, which make Aheadd® CP1 the solution of choice both for rapid prototyping and long production series.
For both alloys, the properties of the piece produced can be customized by fine-tuning the post-build stress-relief treatment. This simplifies post-processing by eliminating the need to solution treat, quench and age, and also minimizes the risk of distortion of printed components during post processing.
Targeted Market, Application & Value drivers
• Engine components with service temperatures above 150°C, replacing selected titanium AM applications;
• Complex structural components.
• High strength at low and elevated temperatures;
• High thermal stability;
• Good corrosion resistance;
• Robust AM process window with good productivity;
• Geometric control: simplified post-processing with no quench requirement.
• Heat exchangers with complex geometries (including service temperatures above 150°C);
• Components or housings which need good thermal or electrical conductivity e.g. in hybrid/electric vehicles;
• Cost-effective improvement of existing aluminium AM solutions in Al-Si alloys/
• High thermal and electrical conductivity;
• High thermal stability up to 250°C;
• High corrosion resistance, anodizing compatibility;
• High strength and ductility;
• Ability to print highly complex & large parts without cracking;
• Geometric control: low residual stresses, simplified post-processing with no quench requirement;
• Cost reduction: high printing productivity and reduced need for support structures (no quench).
New Alloy Development for Fuselage and Wings
Building upon many years of collaboration with the world’s most prominent airframers, Constellium delivers first-class aluminium alloy solutions for fuselage and wing applications.
Sheet solutions available in a highly formable temper allow for stretch forming of complex parts without heat treating, resulting in quicker, easier production.
We are working in close collaboration with our partners on a “wing of the future,” bringing even more advanced features and cost benefits to our customers.