Boeing and CSIR Collaborate on Titanium Powder Manufacturing

South Africa economic development and could expand titanium supply for many industries.

June 12, 2013
Manufacturing Group
People/Facilities Industry News Materials
Boeing and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) announce that they will conduct joint research on ways to incorporate titanium powder into industrial manufacturing processes, including aircraft manufacturing.
The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in South Africa is a scientific and technology research, development and implementation organization in Africa. It undertakes directed research and development for socio-economic growth.
This mutually beneficial research collaboration supports South Africa’s long-term economic development and could expand the supply of titanium for many industries, including aerospace, Boeing officials say in a statement.
South Africa, which has the world’s second-largest reserves of titanium ore, has developed and patented technology to convert titanium ore to titanium powder. On June 7, the CSIR launched a titanium pilot plant to further advance titanium powder technology. Aligned with that objective, Boeing and CSIR signed a memorandum of understanding to collaborate on processes that could bring titanium powder-based products to commercial markets on an industrial scale and improve the efficiency of titanium manufacturing, officials from the company say.
Dr William Lyons, Boeing Research & Technology director of Global Technology, says Boeing’s research with CSIR will advance the science of a promising technology. “This research is important to the aviation industry because it will enable us to use titanium powder for manufacturing in ways that reduce energy consumption and waste,” Lyons says. 
Dr Willie du Preez, director of the South African Titanium Centre of Competence, hosted by the CSIR, says the collaboration with Boeing will bring value to South Africa. “Boeing’s competencies and experience regarding the applications of titanium in aerospace will hugely benefit CSIR’s drive towards commercialization of titanium technologies,” says Du Preez. 
J. Miguel Santos, Boeing International vice president for Africa, says the company is pleased to broaden its relationships in South Africa. “Our research and development agreement with CSIR adds a new dimension to Boeing engagement in South Africa,” Santos states. “We are collaborating to advance South Africa’s development in the aviation industry, which will increase the competitiveness of Boeing products.”
Boeing Research & Technology (BR&T) will oversee the company’s research activity in South Africa. As Boeing's advanced research and development organization, BR&T is focused on developing future aerospace solutions and improving the cycle time, cost, quality and performance of current aerospace systems. BR&T conducts its own research and works with partners around the world to find technologies that are innovative and affordable.