Alcoa unveils world’s biggest aluminum-lithium plant

Aluminum giant, Alcoa Inc. (AA) announced that it has opened the world’s biggest aluminum-lithium plant in Lafayette, IN in order to produce light alloy materials for the aerospace industry. The new facility is the largest of Alcoa’s three aluminum-lithium expansions. The shares of the company rose as much as 1.5% following the news release.

Alcoa's new $90-million, advanced manufacturing facility will produce more than 44 million pounds of aluminum-lithium for the production of airplanes. The aircraft manufacturers are switching to lighter and stronger aluminum-lithium alloys as they are less expensive than the conventional titanium and composites, and enable better fuel efficiency, which is the largest single expense for many airlines, at lower maintenance costs. The plant will also provide the world’s largest aluminum-lithium ingots for airplanes which is about 50% larger than its competitors.

Alcoa occupies the leading position in the market for aluminum-lithium extrusions and a considerable position on the Airbus A380, Airbus A350, Boeing 787, and Gulfstream G650. The company provides the most complete portfolio of aluminum-lithium products, including extruded, forged and rolled parts.

Alcoa has also expanded aluminum-lithium capacity at plants near Pittsburgh and in the United Kingdom. The company has contracted for $100 million in revenue from the plants in 2017. Alcoa is also is developing the first ever aluminum-lithium forging for a front fan blade for Pratt & Whitney’s PurePower engines.

Alcoa currently holds a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

Other well-performing companies in the mining space include U.S. Silica Holdings, Inc. (SLCA), Dominion Diamond Corp. (DDC) and Silvercorp Metals Inc. (SVM). While Solitario Exploration & Royalty sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), Dominion Diamond and Silvercorp Metals have a Zacks Rank #2.
 
ALCOA INC (AA): Free Stock Analysis Report
US SILICA HOLDI (SLCA): Free Stock Analysis Report
DOMINION DIAMND (DDC): Free Stock Analysis Report
SILVERCORP METL (SVM): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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