Latrobe Specialty Steel Win Award to Reduce Production Lead Times for Military Alloys

After competitive bidding, the Department of Defense awarded a technology investment agreement to Latrobe Specialty Steel to reduce production lead times by increasing production capacity for specific vacuum melted or remelted alloys. These vacuum melted specialty steels become militarily essential parts like rotor shafts for helicopters, hot sections of jet engines or torsion bars on fighting vehicles.

“Every employee at Latrobe Specialty Steel understands the essential role our vacuum melted steels play in the defense of the United States and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan,” said Hans Sack, President and Chief Executive Officer. “This investment by both the Department of Defense and Latrobe means that replacement parts made from LSS’s life-critical vacuum melted alloys reach the troops when they are needed,” Sack added.

Latrobe Specialty Steel contended in open competitive bidding for this cost-sharing project. To match the Department of Defense’s $16,606,000 award, Latrobe will contribute approximately $53,454,000. Latrobe’s new vacuum melting facility and its support resources will employ approximately 40 additional people in Westmoreland and Venango Counties of Pennsylvania.

Title III of the Defense Production Act, which dates from the Korean War, provides financial incentives to domestic firms to make investments in production capabilities for vital security needs. The impetus for this specific project came from the Army’s Aviation and Missile Command in Huntsville, AL and started in 2004. Three studies spanning more than two years confirmed that a lack of vacuum-melted, high-strength, iron-based steels hurts troop readiness.

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