IBC Engineered Materials, an investment caster in Wilmington, MA, will be the exclusive supplier of a series of cast parts for an unnamed manufacturer of semiconductor and electronics assembly equipment, according to a recent announcement by its parent company. IBC Advanced Alloys Corp. indicated the four-year agreement is worth approximately $4.8 million.
Last summer, IBC two contracts totaling $1.2 million to supply finished beryllium-aluminum parts to an unnamed Asian manufacturer in the semiconductor industry, to begin in Q1 2016.
"High-performance automation and manufacturing are great applications for Beralcast® materials and it is a privilege to serve this leading global company," stated IBC Engineered Materials president Chris Huskamp. "Robotics, precision manufacturing, and automated assembly equipment use sophisticated designs and complex components to meet demanding design criteria and critical tolerances."
IBC Engineered Materials was developed in 2011 to manufacture investment cast parts in IBC’s proprietary beryllium-aluminum alloys, licensed as Beralcast, a material noted for its light weight and exceptionally high stiffness. The most notable applications to date for the material involves critical parts produced for Lockheed Martin as part of the F-35 Lightning II stealth fighter jet program.
Beralcast alloys reportedly are more than three times stiffer than aluminum with 22% less weight and a high modulus of elasticity. It is used to produce complex, lightweight, or high-stiffness parts and frequently serves as a higher-performance or lower-cost alternative to cast aluminum, magnesium, titanium, metal matrix composites, non-metallic composites, and pure beryllium or powder metallurgy beryllium-aluminum.
"While IBC will continue to focus on near-term growth opportunities in its core aerospace and defense business," stated General David Heinz, IBC Advanced Alloys COO, "we are pleased to be strengthening our relationship with a recognized global leader and look forward to supporting them for many years to come.”
Heinz noted without detail that “recent changes to our IBC Engineered Materials operations have resulted in improved production rates and operating efficiencies,” and he described the new contract as part of a strategy to expand the investment caster’s aerospace product offerings and customer base.