North America’s largest linear friction welder now operational at LIFT in Detroit

LIFT – Lightweight Innovations for Tomorrow, a national manufacturing innovation facility operated by the American Lightweight Materials Innovation Institute, has announced that the first and only linear friction welding machine capable of full-sized part development in North America is now fully operational and ready for project work at its Detroit facility.

At 22 by 8 by 14 ft. and 122,000 lbs., the machine, built and installed by Manufacturing Technology Inc. (MTI), South Bend, Ind., has the largest tooling capacity of any linear friction welder in the world, allowing for the production of the largest full-scale parts available.

With the machine available for R&D, LIFT and its partners will explore how linear friction welding technology can be used in the automotive and defense industries, in addition to its current uses in aerospace.

MTI and LIFT will have shared capacity of the machine. MTI will run and maintain the machine, complete customer-directed work on it, and support any programs that LIFT has moving forward.