originative

Over the centuries, Imphy plant has witnessed and even sometimes initiated industrial, technological and managerial change :

In the 1920s, the perfection of a chromium-nickel-iron alloy called Elinvar revolutionized watchmaking techniques by producing greater time precision in mechanical watches.

Around the same time, the first thermostatic bimetallic strips were used in thermometry and control applications. In 1965, the first large capacity LNG tanker, the Jules Verne, was built with Invar® tanks. In 1968, the first colour TV sets arrived in Europe, comprising trimetal. In the middle of the 1980s, the first high-quality cathode ray tubes used a shadow mask made of Invar. At the end of the 1960s, miniature cores of high-performance magnetic alloys equipped the first-generation French nuclear-powered submarines (Redoutable Class).Around the same time, the exploration of space was in full expansion.

An Invar® reflector was sent to the moon to measure the precise distance between the moon and the earth by laser. The quest continued with optical telescope supports on board satellites, with stepping motors and casings used to align the solar panels. The 1970s saw the arrival of the first integrated circuits whose supports, also called leadframes, were built in N 42, a controlled expansion alloy. In 1981, the first high-speed trains (TGVs) in circulation were fitted with braking resistances made of chromium-nickel-iron alloys, and magnetic components for electronic power control.

At the beginning of the 1980s, the first quartz watches appeared on the scene. Their motors were made from magnetic alloy parts and high stress proof alloys. In 1995, magnetic alloys were used in the shielding of the first medical rooms dedicated to MRI brain scanners. Today, the composite metal parts of the structure of the Airbus A 380 and the Boeing 7E7 are made with Invar® moulds, while the on-board generators are made of cobalt alloys.