Australian advanced manufacturing company Titomic has executed an Exclusive License Agreement with CSIRO and an Acquisition Agreement with Future Titanium Technologies.

The Exclusive License Agreement with CSIRO grants Titomic exclusive global rights to two patents for the production of pipe, as well as continuous pipe manufactured using titanium and titanium alloys. This will open significant revenue opportunities for Titomic across a number of major industries, in particular the oil & gas, defence, marine and mining sectors.

Under the agreement, Titomic will also receive more than eight years of exclusive innovative additive manufacturing techniques, background IP, and know-how for the production of pipe and pipe components including, but not limited to, valves and fitting components. This technology results from the 2010 Victorian Government-initiated Victorian Direct Manufacturing Centre (VDMC) program, which received contributions of approximately $10M, from industry and research providers to help revitalise the manufacturing sector and deliver economic and environmental benefits to Victoria.

Pipe can now be 3D-printed using Titomic Kinetic Fusion (TKF) systems, without the size and profile constraints of traditional pipe manufacturing techniques. TKF-produced metal pipe has superior wear and corrosion resistant properties in comparison to traditional wrought metal pipe. By utilising TKF’s production method of fusing dissimilar metals for pipes, valves and fitting components means industries will be able to gain access to next-generation dual-wall materials for superior wear and corrosive resistance properties.

“This is a significant expansion of Titomic’s IP and associated revenue opportunities,” said Jeff Lang, Managing Director of Titomic. “By adding these two new patents we are broadening our footprint in the titanium and titanium alloys additive manufacturing space to firmly secure our future market segments. These new TKF technologies enable Titomic to provide viable digital manufacturing capabilities leading to significant short, mid and long-term revenue opportunities.”

Stefan Gulizia, Research Group Leader at CSIRO, added: “Working with companies like Titomic shows that manufacturing remains a key driver in the Australian economy. We are pleased that Titomic are licensing the rights to utilise and further commercialise CSIRO research in developing new products and processes that go towards supporting productivity gains, boosting sustainability and helping capture emerging opportunities in local and global markets.”

Titomic can exploit this technology commercially due to several key performance factors:

Quality: Titanium TKF-produced metal pipe has superior wear and corrosion resistant properties.

Scale: TKF-produced pipe has no size and profile constraints compared to traditional pipe manufacturing techniques.

Cost: Titomic’s cost-effective powder supply chain has overcome the largest barrier to entry for additive manufacturing suppliers into the oil & gas, defence, marine and mining sectors.

Speed: The TKF automated production line enables industry to manufacture continuous metal pipe using additive manufacturing.

Sustainability: Australia dominates the world’s resources for titanium minerals, and Titomic is aims to make a valuable contribution to establishing a titanium manufacturing industry and adding value to Australian natural resources.

For example, the oil & gas industry is one of the world’s largest users of valves. The inventory required and the lifecycle of these valves and fitting components is significantly influenced by sediments, sand, rock and other abrasive matter running through the pipe and fitting components during the extraction process. These new patents and knowledge capabilities will allow Titomic to produce piping, valves and fitting components with a significantly higher wear resistance than current piping being used.

There are significant cost and efficiency savings for consumers of piping and fitting components, not only through longer lifecycles of parts, reduced down time, lower maintenance costs, but also because TKF systems can produce piping, values and fitting components with new superalloys and metallurgical fusion of metal powders, combined with alloys, ceramics, polymers and composites to deliver superior performance properties. This offers opportunities never before available to industries whereby the outside material of a product can be selected for the external environmental factors. For example, metals with corrosive protection from salt water, and the internal material of the product can be a different metal for the internal use factors such as high wear protection from abrasive materials.