Alcoa Expands R&D Center to Deepen Additive Manufacturing Capabilities

September 3, 2015

Investment to Capture Growing Demand for Complex, High-Performance Parts for Aerospace and Beyond

  • $60 million expansion to include state-of-the-art additive manufacturing center focused on feedstock materials, processes, product design and qualification
  • Investment advances development of proprietary metal powders engineered specifically for 3D printing
  • Company unveils Ampliforge™ process, an Alcoa-invented technique combining additive and traditional manufacturing for enhanced properties
  • Builds on over 100 years of metal powder production history and 20 years of additive manufacturing expertise with capabilities in California, Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Texas

Lightweight metals leader Alcoa (NYSE:AA) is expanding its R&D center in
Pennsylvania to accelerate the development of advanced 3D-printing
materials and processes. Alcoa will produce materials designed
specifically for a range of additive technologies to meet increasing
demand for complex, high-performance 3D-printed parts for aerospace and
other high-growth markets such as automotive, medical and building and
construction. The $60 million expansion is under construction at the
Alcoa Technical Center, the world’s largest light metals research center
near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

“Alcoa is investing in the next generation of 3D printing for aerospace
and beyond,” said Alcoa Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Klaus
Kleinfeld. “Combining our expertise in metal alloys, manufacturing,
design and product qualification, we will push beyond the limits of
today’s additive manufacturing. This investment strengthens our
leadership position in meeting fast-growing demand for aerospace
components made using additive technologies.”

Demonstrating this integrated strategy, the Company today unveiled its Ampliforge™
process, a technique combining advanced materials, designs and additive
and traditional manufacturing processes. Using the Ampliforge™ process,
Alcoa designs and 3D-prints a near complete part, then treats it using a
traditional manufacturing process, such as forging. The Company has
shown that the process can enhance the properties of 3D-printed parts,
such as increasing toughness and strength, versus parts made solely by
additive manufacturing. Further, the Ampliforge™ process significantly
reduces material input and simplifies production relative to traditional
forging processes. Alcoa is piloting the technique in Pittsburgh and

The Company’s comprehensive approach to advancing additive manufacturing

  • Materials Leadership: Alcoa’s material scientists will produce
    proprietary aluminum, titanium and nickel powders designed
    specifically for 3D-printing. These powders will be tailored for
    various additive manufacturing processes to produce higher strength
    3D-printed parts, and meet other quality and performance requirements.
    Alcoa has a long history in metal alloy and powder development, having
    invented over 90 percent of the aluminum alloys used in aerospace
    today and with a 100-year history in aluminum metal powder development
    for rocket fuel, paint and other products.
  • Combination of Process and Design: Alcoa will further its
    development of advanced 3D-printing design and manufacturing
    techniques—such as Alcoa’s Ampliforge™ process—to improve production
    speeds, reduce costs, and achieve geometries not possible through
    traditional methods. Direct production of 3D-printed metal parts
    represents a new way to manufacture aerospace components and requires
    a new suite of innovative design tools to realize its full potential.
    By connecting our materials scientists with our manufacturing experts,
    we enable a rapid development feedback loop to inform new software
    tools and processes that take full advantage of additive capabilities.
  • Qualification Expertise: With the industry’s longest-running
    history of certifying aerospace components and qualifying processes,
    Alcoa will use its testing and process control expertise to overcome
    challenges with certifying new 3D-printed parts, starting with
    aerospace applications.

This expansion of the Alcoa Technical Center builds on Alcoa’s additive
manufacturing capabilities in California, Georgia, Michigan,
Pennsylvania and Texas. The Company has been creating 3D-printed tools,
molds and prototypes for the past 20 years and owns and operates one of
the world’s largest HIP (Hot Isostatic Pressing) complexes
aerospace, a technology that strengthens the metallic structures of
traditional and additive manufactured parts made of titanium and nickel
based super-alloys. Through the recent
RTI acquisition
, Alcoa gained 3D printing capabilities in titanium,
other specialty metals and plastics for the aerospace, oil and gas and
medical markets. This expansion positions Alcoa to industrialize its
advanced 3D printing capabilities across these and other manufacturing

Construction of the new facility is expected to be completed in the
first quarter of 2016. The project will create more than 100 full-time
positions—including materials specialists, design experts, and process
and inspection technologists—by 2017 and approximately 45 temporary jobs
during construction.

The Pennsylvania Department of Community & Economic Development,
Westmoreland County, Upper Burrell Township and Burrell School District
have agreed to support the project through a mixture of financial
support and tax abatements, resulting in an estimated cost savings of up
to $10 million.

About Additive Manufacturing

Additive manufacturing refers to the production of three-dimensional
products by depositing one layer of material—such as metals and
plastics—on top of another layer, based on a digital model. The process
can help increase productivity, help customers bring products to market
faster and enable the creation of complex designs not possible using
traditional materials and processes.

About Alcoa

A global leader in lightweight metals technology, engineering and
manufacturing, Alcoa innovates multi-material solutions that advance our
world. Our technologies enhance transportation, from automotive and
commercial transport to air and space travel, and improve industrial and
consumer electronics products. We enable smart buildings, sustainable
food and beverage packaging, high-performance defense vehicles across
air, land and sea, deeper oil and gas drilling and more efficient power
generation. We pioneered the aluminum industry over 125 years ago, and
today, our more than 60,000 people in 30 countries deliver value-add
products made of titanium, nickel and aluminum, and produce
best-in-class bauxite, alumina and primary aluminum products. For more
information, visit,
follow @Alcoa on Twitter and
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Forward-Looking Statements

This release contains statements that relate to future events and
expectations and, as such, constitute “forward-looking statements”
within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of
1995. Forward-looking statements include those containing such words as
“accelerates,” “anticipates,” “estimates,” “expects,” “positions,”
“projects,” “should,” “will,” or other words of similar meaning. All
statements that reflect Alcoa’s strategies, outlook, expectations,
assumptions, or projections about the future other than statements of
historical fact are forward-looking statements, including, without
limitation, statements regarding the expected benefits and results of
expanding Alcoa’s research and development (R&D) center in Pennsylvania
and its development of advanced 3D-printing materials and processes;
forecasts regarding demand growth for complex, high-performance parts
for aerospace and other markets and Alcoa’s ability to capture such
demand; and the expected timing for completion of construction of the
expanded R&D facility in Pennsylvania and expected employment levels.
Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and
are subject to risks, uncertainties, and changes in circumstances that
are difficult to predict. Important factors that could cause actual
results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in the
forward-looking statements include: (a) unfavorable changes in general
economic conditions or in the markets served by Alcoa, including
aerospace, automotive, building and construction, and other markets; (b)
Alcoa’s inability to successfully implement, or to realize expected
benefits from, new technologies, investments, capacity expansions, or
advanced manufacturing processes, including, without limitation, the
expanded R&D facility in Pennsylvania, Alcoa’s proprietary metal
powders, Alcoa’s new Ampliforge™ process for combining advanced
materials, designs and additive and traditional manufacturing processes,
Alcoa’s Hot Isostatic Pressing technology, and other innovative products
and techniques; (c) the impact of competitive developments, changes in
the regulatory environment, or trends in the metals engineering,
technology, and manufacturing sectors; (d) failure of Alcoa’s additive
manufacturing processes to meet customer specifications, product
qualification tests, strength or fatigue resistance expectations, or
other quality, design, cost, safety, or performance requirements; (e)
Alcoa’s inability to realize expected benefits, as planned and by
targeted completion dates, from the RTI acquisition; and (f) the other
risk factors discussed in Alcoa’s Form 10-K for the year ended December
31, 2014, and other reports filed with the Securities and Exchange
Commission. Alcoa disclaims any intention or obligation to update
publicly any forward-looking statements, whether in response to new
information, future events or otherwise, except as required by
applicable law.

Investor Contact
Nahla Azmy, 212-836-2674
Media Contact
Christa Bowers, 212-836-2605