Aerospace manufacturing technologies centre

The NRC's aerospace manufacturing technologies centre is located primarily on the campus of the Université de Montréal in Quebec, with 2 satellite facilities in Mirabel, Quebec and Ottawa, Ontario. Built in 2004, this hub of modern manufacturing practices supports industry, particularly the aerospace sector, to develop, demonstrate and implement next‑generation, cost‑effective manufacturing methods.

Our capabilities

We support our clients by performing research and technology development in the following areas:

Why work with us

The NRC is focused on supporting industry with the design and development of the next generation of cost‑effective and environmentally friendly aircraft. Manufacturing makes up nearly half of Canada's aerospace sector and we are well positioned to enable industry throughout the supply chain to contribute to this highly competitive and lucrative market.

Our technical experts and engineers support our clients with the advancement and demonstration of cutting‑edge manufacturing technologies that have the potential for significant cost savings while maintaining high levels of quality, reliability and performance.


  • hybrid additive‑subtractive in‑envelop 3D metal printer (Lumex Avance‑25 400 W laser powder bed fusion additive manufacturing with CNC milling)
  • 42 kW electron beam welding, processing and additive manufacturing
  • CNC 3 kW industrial laser system with metal powder and wire feeding for direct energy deposition additive manufacturing, repair and welding
  • robotic TopTIG additive manufacturing and welding system
  • robotic 5 kW fiber laser system integrated with arc welding (cold metal transfer) and wire/powder feeding for hybrid laser arc welding, additive manufacturing and repair
  • indoor flight area for development of drone‑based service & maintenance applications, including several instrumented small to medium‑size drone platforms
  • robotized machining platform including rail‑mounted high payload industrial robot, high capacity HSD machining spindles with integrated minimum quantity lubrication (MQL) capability and auxiliary 3 ton‑capacity rotating table
  • mirror manufacturing platform incorporating two cooperating master/slave KUKA Quantec industrial robots synchronized in real‑time
  • human‑robot collaboration environment with rail‑mounted UR10 collaborative robot, various assembly and finishing process end‑effectors and dust collection downdraft table 
  • robotic electrospark deposition system
  • CNC and robotic friction‑stir welding end‑effector and control systems
  • linear friction welding system
  • non‑contact digital image correlation (DIC) system for 3D deformation measurement
  • 250 kN materials testing facility with room and high temperature capability for tensile, compression, shear, bend and fatigue testing
  • ATOS‑Core optical 3D scanner for reverse engineering and geometric inspection
  • 1000‑ton hydroforming press
  • 250 and 500‑ton forging presses
  • Automated Dynamics fibre placement machine for manufacturing medium size thermoset and thermoplastic composite structures
  • VIPER 4000 fibre placement machine for manufacturing large size thermoset composite structures
  • a 20' × 6' high‑temperature / pressure industrial autoclave
  • a 8' × 4' high temperature / pressure research autoclave
  • variety of composite materials processing ovens, including a high temperature / large volume convection oven
  • Advanced composite materials forming process cell
  • resin transfer moulding equipment
  • laser ultrasonic inspection system for large size composite and metallic structures
  • continuous resistance welding for thermoplastic composites
  • 150 ton heated press for compression moulding and forming of thermoset and thermoplastic composites
  • physical vapour deposition (PVD) facilities including magnetron sputtering, cathodic arc evaporation and electron beam evaporation (EB‑PVD) coaters
  • material and surface characterization facilities for composites, resins and coatings (DSC, DMA, TGA, rheometer, goniometer, profilometer, high‑speed sand erosion tester, salt spray chamber, spray booth and a polymer coating formulation lab)
  • Materials metallography and characterization facilities (hardness, confocal microscope, optical microscope, XRF, profilometer, density measurement by pycnometry and Archimedes methods)
  • a 20' × 20' × 20' gantry with 2 multi‑axial Kuka robots for automated assembly/riveting and joining
  • intelligent shot peening equipment
  • tele‑operation and haptic user interfacing
  • high‑precision optical and laser tracking metrology and vision systems for robotic applications
  • digital manufacturing and computing facility
  • mobile manipulator systems
  • industrial‑level long‑reach rail‑mounted robots
  • a 5‑axis Makino multi‑tasking machining centre
  • a 5‑axis DMG multi‑tasking machining centre
  • a 6‑axis Boehringer two‑spindle turning centre
  • facilities for vibration assisted, laser‑assisted, minimum quantity lubrication and cryogenic machining that can be linked to various machining and turning centres
  • an online coordinate measuring machine
  • high‑temperature fretting wear facility