Amaero has entered into an Agreement to collaborate with Rio Tinto on the development of the supply chain for Amaero’s high performance, High Operating Temperature Aluminium Alloy, “Amaero HOT Al”. Rio Tinto holds aluminium and scandium production capability and, under the Agreement, Rio Tinto will provide Amaero with alloy billets to be processed into powder for 3D printing.
Commenting on the Agreement, Amaero CEO Barrie Finnin said: “We are very pleased to enter into this Agreement with Rio Tinto. This is an important step in the commercialisation of this high performance aluminium scandium alloy that will be used in our breakthrough 3D metal printing technology. We look forward to working with Rio Tinto to progress the production of the alloy so we can commence the qualification process with key customers in the aerospace sector and other industries.”
Tolga Egrilmezer, Vice President, Sales and Marketing for Rio Tinto Aluminium commented: “As a global leader in aluminium and the first producer of high-quality scandium oxide in North America, Rio Tinto is uniquely positioned to provide a secure source of aluminium-scandium alloy to the market. 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 HOT Al is a new high-performance aluminium alloy, with scandium and manganese alloying additions, resulting in 3D printed parts that can be directly aged (age hardening heat treatment), to yield superior strength and durability at high operating temperature. Amaero holds exclusive global commercial licence rights to the patented alloy, developed by Monash University. In July 2020 the Company applied for broad international patent coverage for the new heat treatable aluminium alloy, which is now in the final approval stage, the national phase of the Patent Cooperation Treaty (“PCT”).
Aluminium-scandium alloys have significant applications in the aerospace, defence and sports equipment industries, which includes the manufacture of tennis rackets, baseball bats, bicycle frames and multiple other applications, which rely on high performance materials. The development and patent application aligns with Amaero’s long-term strategy of expanding its offering through the commercialisation of metal alloys developed by the Company and our research partners. This is the second patented alloy and powder that Amaero holds exclusive global commercial license rights to.