US Navy Supports Advanced Welding Project

Alcoa awarded $2.1 million USN contract to develop welding technology

Alcoa has been awarded a U.S. Navy $2.1 million contract to develop advanced welding techniques designed to reduce manufacturing costs on aluminum-intensive ships.

Under the program, developed through a collaboration by Alcoa’s Government Affairs team and researchers at the Alcoa Technical Center in New Kensington, PA, Alcoa will adapt high-deposition gas metal arc welding technology to marine structures, enabling the Navy to reduce the cost of shipbuilding. Total projected savings for the Navy could be as much as $200 million under current shipbuilding plans.

High-deposition gas metal arc welding is a semi-automated welding process that reduces weld passes, thus reducing labor costs and improving weld quality. The process will be applied to the Navy’s Littoral Combat Ship (LCS). It could also be transferred to the Navy’s Joint High Speed Vessel (JHSV) and other aluminum-intensive ships.

In the past 12 months, Alcoa has received $8 million in new research and development contracts to help the nation’s military become lighter, faster, stronger and more efficient.

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