The latest high performance helicopter models from AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, will offer significantly improved flight dynamics through its adoption of Elektron 21, the very latest lightweight magnesium casting alloy technology.
The AgustaWestland helicopters are the first non-US helicopters to go into production with Elektron 21 castings with first deliveries planned for mid 2012. AgustaWestland has worked together with Magnesium Elektron in the UK, a world leader in the development of magnesium alloys, to integrate Elektron 21 into its product range. The Elektron 21 castings were developed and are now successfully being produced at AgustaWestland's own foundry in Benevento, Italy. Elektron 21 represents the latest in magnesium casting alloy technology, combining excellent mechanical properties up to 200°C, good flammability resistance, ease of casting, and very good corrosion resistance.
The use of Elektron 21 in AgustaWestland helicopters represents the culmination of many decades of a successful supplier relationship between AgustaWestland and Magnesium Elektron, where AgustaWestland has continually utilised the very latest lightweight magnesium technologies offered by Magnesium Elektron to ensure their helicopters are world class.
Elektron 21 achieved an Aerospace Material Specification (AMS 4429) a full year ahead of expectations, and is the first and only magnesium casting alloy to be included in the MMPDS handbook with full A and B basis design allowables. The USA based MMPDS handbook (formerly known as MIL-HNDBK-5) is accepted worldwide as the aerospace designers' preeminent source for aerospace component design allowables.
Magnesium Elektron is a world leader in the production of high performance magnesium alloys and products. The company began production of magnesium in 1936 at its Manchester, UK plant and subsequently developed a wide range of magnesium alloy systems and products. Elektron 21 is the latest stage in this ongoing development. The company is part of the Luxfer Group, an international materials technology company specialising in the design, manufacture and supply of high performance materials and components to the environmental, healthcare, protection, and speciality markets.