Hittech University: ‘It is all about understanding materials’

On June 13, the first technical Colloquium of the Hittech University took place. Five lectures presented different (technical and scientifical) aspects of Titanium. Material knowledge is a core competence of the Hittech Group. We produce RSP Aluminum alloys. We have an Aluminum casting company in the group. Within Hittech Machining, MPP focuses on Aluminum machining whereas Bihca is specialized in hard metals like Titanium.

Continuous learning is one of the aspects of our motto ‘Masters in improvement’. Hittech University, started 3 years ago, is a new initiative in this field. Titanium is material often used by our customers for state-of-the-art products. We want to train our employees in production and development aspects of this challenging material.

Collaboration and an open attitude is the only way to make a competitive difference as High Tech Industry. Therefore we also invited our largest customers ASML and VDL to send a few of their specialists to join the Hittech University.

We invited external speakers from science and industry and combined this knowledge with our internal expertise on Titanium and RSP Aluminum alloys. Prof. Jilt Sietsma and Prof. Ian Richardson from TU Delft, Faculty of Material Science, presented fundamental material aspects to give a clear understanding of the behavior during production and fundamentals on connection technologies of Titanium and Titanium alloys. The presentation of Mr. Marko Bosman, CTO Fokker Aerospace, dealt with Titanium in Aerospace. He focused especially on the new and edge-breaking capabilities of 3d printing for Aerospace.

Mr. Koen Mentink, CEO Hittech Bihca, for many years highly involved in developing Titanium machining capabilities at Hittech Bihca, presented technology aspects on production of titanium products. Most challenging example was the carrier structure from ASML, a 1 x 1.2 m part of which 90% is removed, consisting of a few 100 threaded holes.

Last but not least: it is important to realize there are alternatives for Titanium. As Hittech we produce RSP Aluminum alloys; a high quality, high strength and high stability Aluminum-Silicon alloy. Mr. Roger Senden, CTO of Hittech RSP Technology, presented the characteristics and do’s and don’ts of RSP alloys. His presentation was illustrated with impressive examples from Formula 1, Astronomy, Ophthalmic industry and many more.

The University was finalized by a walking diner with vivid discussions and the clear ambition to apply the knowledge just learned, and to continue this successful initiative.

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