25 March 2010

Alcan Engineered Products opens its outstanding research and development capabilities to industry third parties

Alcan Engineered Products – a business unit of Rio Tinto – is opening to other companies the use of its cutting-edge R&D centre dedicated to aluminium and its alloys.

Based in Voreppe (France), this European leading research and development centre is unequalled and has gained international renown since its opening. Previously focused exclusively on working with Rio Tinto businesses, the centre now plans to assist other industrial companies in developing state-of-the-art solutions.

This broadening of our activities will encourage more holistic and more innovative solutions to the benefit of our existing and new clients,” said Didier Albert, Sales Development Director of Alcan CRV Services.

Aluminium is becoming the material of choice for more and more industries. It is three times less dense than steel, indefinitely recyclable without the loss of any of its properties, extremely resistant to corrosion and offers a high thermal and electrical conductivity. As such, aluminium applications promote energy efficiency and reduced carbon footprints.

These intrinsic qualities have resulted in significant growth of the use of aluminium in such diverse sectors as road, rail, maritime and air transport; packaging; building and the energy sector.

Developing new aluminium solutions and products requires strong expertise across a variety of areas such as product and process metallurgy, material characterisation, forming, joining and surface treatment,” said Mr. Albert.

The unique properties of aluminium make it a material of choice for many industries. For the first time, other companies can benefit from our longstanding and recognised expertise to design, model and test new applications to support their development,” added Mr. Albert.

The expertise and resources of Alcan CRV Services will support projects requiring multiple capabilities and disciplines. From the nano to the macroscopic scale, from technical assistance to metallurgical prototyping, Alcan CRV Services will allow companies to create and produce cost-effective tailored materials

The solutions offered by Alcan CRV Services include training programmes and an access to significant bibliographic resources, allowing companies to implement and tailor all the elements of their research and development programmes such as:

  • Material characterisation and analysis
  • Corrosion study and treatment
  • Material design and modeling assistance
  • Production of metallurgical prototypes
  • Thermal treatment
  • Mechanical testing
  • Forming
  • Joining
  • Surface treatment

Opened in 1967 and a part of Alcan Engineered Products since 2003, Alcan’s Voreppe Research Centre is responsible for a number of aluminium metallurgy innovations including the conception of alloys, metallurgic states, products, new functional applications and transformation and deployment processes.

Alcan Engineered Products is a global sector leader strongly committed to developing innovative, value-added aluminum products for a broad range of civil and defence markets and applications, including aerospace, mass transportation, automotive, packaging, energy and building.

With around 11,000 employees located in 27 countries and a commercial presence in more than 60 markets across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, the Americas and the Asia-Pacific region, Alcan Engineered Products is organised around businesses dedicated to performance materials in the areas of aluminum rolled products, extrusions and automotive structures, aluminium cable and international trade. Alcan Engineered Products is headquartered in Paris, France.

About Rio Tinto

Rio Tinto is a leading international mining group headquartered in the UK, combining Rio Tinto plc, a London and NYSE listed company, and Rio Tinto Limited, which is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange.

Rio Tinto's business is finding, mining, and processing mineral resources. Major products are aluminium, copper, diamonds, energy (coal and uranium), gold, industrial minerals (borax, titanium dioxide, salt, talc) and iron ore. Activities span the world but are strongly represented in Australia and North America with significant businesses in South America, Asia, Europe and southern Africa


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