Lighter Airplanes with Alcoa’s Aluminum-Lithium
During 2012, we began expanding our capacity to meet growing demand from aerospace customers for aluminum-lithium (Al-Li). Because our third generation Al-Li alloys are 4% to 6% less dense and 5% to 7% stiffer than conventional aluminum alloys, they enable manufacturers to build lighter and stronger airplanes. The combined benefi ts of lighter weight and the corrosion resistance properties of Al-Li lead to lower fuel costs and maintenance expense for our customers. For those performance and cost benefi ts, aircraft designers are choosing Alcoa Al-Li alloys for a wide range of aircraft, including the Airbus A380, the largest commercial airplane in the world. To meet that increased demand, Alcoa is building a new state-of-the-art facility in Indiana that will produce more than 20,000 metric tons of Al-Li annually, expanding the Alcoa Technical Center’s Al-Li capacity by 30% and upgrading our Kitts Green, UK, casting house to serve European aerospace customers.