Press Release

Alcan Contributes to Success of Ariane 5 ECA Rocket

By SpaceRef Editor
October 30, 2006
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– Company Supplied High Strength Aluminium Plate for Critical Flight and Control Systems Brackets

Alcan has contributed to the success of the latest Ariane 5 ECA launch on October 13th by supplying EADS Space, the prime contractor of Ariane, a new advanced solution for large brackets, part of the rocket’s upper stage and critical in enabling its flight and control. The Ariane 5 ECA blasted off from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana on a mission to place two satellites into geostationary transfer orbits and deploy a communications antenna.

“Alcan is co-developing groundbreaking aerospace solutions with its customers, taking advantage of the Company’s unique wide range of aluminum alloys,” said Jean-Philippe Caël, President Aerospace, Transportation and Industry (ATI) “This achievement reaffirms Alcan’s leading position in aerospace R&D, and underscores ATI’s innovative, reliable, solution-drive reputation as the partner of choice for aerospace manufacturers,” he added.

Alcan’s aluminum alloy 7040 plate was chosen for this Ariane 5 rocket as its properties include high strength combined with superior damage tolerance resistance against fatigue crack growth and stress corrosion, all at extreme environmental conditions, such as space. Alloy 7040 is produced at Alcan’s Issoire facility in France, a recognized leader in the production of high-quality aluminum plates for aerospace, aeronautical and transportation applications. In June, Issoire – which employs 1,500 people, increased its plate capacity by 20 percent through a new US$28 million advanced aerospace plate installation and equipment.

Alcan supplies some of the world’s largest aerospace manufactures, such as EADS, Airbus, Boeing, Bombardier, Lockheed Martin, Embraer, Dassault, and Pilatus, with advanced aluminum solutions from its manufacturing facilities in Europe and North America.

Alcan Inc. (NYSE: AL , TSX: AL) is a leading global materials company, delivering high quality products and services worldwide. With world-class technology and operations in bauxite mining, alumina processing, primary metal smelting, power generation, aluminium fabrication, engineered solutions as well as flexible and specialty packaging, today’s Alcan is well positioned to meet and exceed its customers’ needs. Alcan is represented by 65,000 employees in 61 countries and regions, and posted revenues of US$20.3 billion in 2005. The Company has featured on the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index consecutively since 2003. For more information, please visit:

SpaceRef staff editor.