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India’s state-owned Mishra Dhatu Nigam Limited (MIDHANI) has achieved a significant breakthrough in the development of advanced materials for the indigenous 5th generation Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) program. MIDHANI’s engineers have successfully formulated a special “space-age” titanium alloy named Titan6242S (Ti-6AL-2Sn-4zr-2Mo-0.08Si).

This newly developed titanium alloy boasts an outstanding combination of tensile strength, toughness, and creep resistance at elevated temperatures reaching 565°C. These properties make Titan6242S ideally suited for the high-pressure compressor (HPC) casing of the AMCA’s jet engine, which endures extreme stress and heat during operation.

While the development of Titan6242S is a major accomplishment, MIDHANI’s researchers acknowledge some technical challenges that need to be addressed.

  • Melting Large Ingots: The process of melting large titanium ingots, specifically 3.2 tons with a large diameter of 850 mm, can lead to segregation, where different elements in the molten metal separate unevenly. MIDHANI is actively working on refining the melting process to ensure a uniform material composition.
  • Understanding Hot Working Behavior: Another challenge lies in fully understanding the deformation behavior of the Ti6242S alloy during hot working. Hot working is a crucial step in shaping the alloy into desired components for the AMCA engine. By thoroughly comprehending how the material reacts under high temperatures and pressure during forming, MIDHANI can optimize the hot working process to achieve the required shapes with minimal defects.

MIDHANI’s development of Titan6242S represents a critical step towards self-reliance in India’s aerospace and defense sectors. By producing this advanced material domestically, India can reduce its dependence on foreign suppliers for critical aircraft components. This not only strengthens national security but also fosters technological advancements within the country.