Company is working with Lockheed Martin to qualify as a supplier of proprietary AlBeCast investment castings.
Materion Brush Beryllium & Composites, a Materion Corp. business, is working with Lockheed Martin to qualify as a supplier of proprietary AlBeCast aluminum-beryllium investment castings for the F-35 Lightning II’s Electro-Optical Targeting System (EOTS).
Materion, which recently announced an expansion of its investment casting operation at its Elmore facility, is the current supplier of AlBeMet, an aluminum-beryllium composite alloy, for EOTS. The AlBeCast expansion extends Materion’s aluminum-beryllium product offering beyond powder metallurgy-derived materials by offering rapid prototyping and solidification modeling to provide investment cast parts with short lead times and competitive pricing. Aluminum-beryllium materials and castings provide favorable cost/benefit advantages for technically demanding customers requiring a combination of ultra-light weight, stiffness, mechanical stability, and thermal properties.
According to Lawrence Ryczek, vice president and general manager, Brush Beryllium & Composites, “Materion is proud to be the qualified supplier of AlBeMet for F-35 EOTS. The Materion casting technology group is working with Lockheed Martin to also qualify Materion as an investment casting supplier. We have provided casting prototypes and are excited for an opportunity to complement our AlBeMet product line with AlBeCast for this program.”
Dr. Jim Yurko, director, Technology, added, “With our recent casting technology breakthroughs, we believe aluminum-beryllium investment casting is optimal for more performance-driven applications with customers in the aerospace, defense, and precision industrial equipment industries.”
The AlBeCast casting investment follows a major expansion of the Elmore facility’s primary beryllium production capacity undertaken over the past several years as part of an innovative private-public partnership between Materion and the U.S. Department of Defense. This primary production capability supports the beryllium product lines for defense as well as critical civilian needs.