About OLIVER Project
The UK has performed world-leading reserach into the welding of structural titanium but is yet to industrially implement it. The OLIVER Project is aimed at accelerating the translation of this research into the UK aerospace supply chain. This will result in a UK competitive capability, creating added value for UK aerospace manufacturing to compete globally in the growing aerospace market.
Current socio-economic pressures on the global civil aerospace industry are increasing the utilisation of titanium in aero-structures. Production of parts by existing methods leads to inefficient buy-to-fly ratios (as high as 20:1), which is becoming increasingly uneconomical (high material cost & labour intensive; leading to high repeat costs, long lead times & design constraints) and driving the need for structures to be fabricated by near-net-shape welding processes. Laser welding is emerging as the process of choice since it can produce low distortion welds of good quality and properties at significantly faster speeds than other welding processes. The OLIVER project will further develop knowledge in laser welding titanium and its application to structural aerospace assemblies, and at the same time exploit this knowledge by developing UK manufacturing capability both within the UK supply chain and OEMs. The OLIVER Project includes 2 OEM case studies which represent first-to-market opportunities for the technologies to be developed. A further case study is included which will demonstrate the capability of laser welding a strut component in a revolutionary titanium-composite.