AN INTERMETALLIC SUCCESS STORY
Lightweight valves in race car engines and engine parts for civil aviation – the use of titanium aluminides brings about crucial change to both industry sectors: change to lighter, firmer, more heat-resistant material. Neither metal nor ceramic: Titanium aluminides, the “best of both worlds,” are produced at GfE.
GfE starts commercial production of Titanium Aluminides in 1995. To produce the material efficiently, an entirely new process chain is developed from already existing technologies. Titanium Aluminides have been their own business division since 2014.
The best of both worlds
The intermetallic material is not an alloy, although it is produced with the help of master alloys. The physical and chemical properties are different and can be summarized as follows: light – solid – heat-resistant. The Titanium Aluminide is already a step above the alloy in the value chain: The material is reprocessed directly into the final product.
For racing and civil aviation
High-performance materials are vital primarily for customers in the racing industry and civil aviation. In 1999, the speed of racing engines suddenly increases from 16,000 to 19,000 revolutions per minute. This increase in power is obtained by installing light-weight valves made from GfE Titanium Aluminides. In 2012, engine manufacturers around the world opt for a new generation of engines and their future equipment with Titanium Aluminides. GfE supplied and supplies materials to all relevant engine programs.
Environmentally friendly revert process
One of the most important maxims in the company: dealing responsibly with raw materials and resources. Titanium Aluminide is not produced exclusively from primary raw materials at GfE, but is predominantly recovered from recycled material that accumulates during reprocessing. Among other things, this is possible due to a specially developed, resource-conserving recycling concept. And so production facilities in the Titanium Aluminides division were put into operation to process recycled material. Since then, the excess titanium aluminide that accumulates in the production process has been remelted in a second process, so that it can then be reprocessed into semi-finished product. Customers also benefit from the revert process: Remnants from their production processes go back to GfE and make it back into the cycle of materials.
Responsible handling is a top priority for GfE. This includes processing remnants without leaving any residue. In order to achieve this, we are continually developing new technologies and adapting existing ones.