Vancouver-based IBC Advanced Alloys Corp. reports Lockheed Martin Missles and Fire Control has selected U.S. subsidiary IBC Engineered Materials Corp., Wilmington, Mass., to provide critical cast components for the Electro-Optical Targeting System (EOTS) on the F-35 Lightning II jet. The first component covered by this contract is an EOTS azimuth gimbal housing to be manufactured using Beralcast, the company’s proprietary beryllium-aluminum casting alloy.
This first contract is for production of OEM aircraft fitted with EOTS systems and spares for low-rate initial production (LRIP) lots 7 and 8. Preproduction has begun, with initial deliveries scheduled for later this year and into 2015. The value of the initial contract is just over $2.0 million including non-recurring engineering (NRE) and hard tooling deliverables, and it has the potential with subsequent LRIP contract awards to increase significantly over the life of the F-35 program. The EOTS assembly being produced by Lockheed Martin is for all the F-35 variants and planned production quantities are estimated to be over 3,000 aircraft with deliveries through 2035.
“We are pleased to announce this validation of our Beralcast alloys and are committed to Lockheed Martin and the demanding requirements of this critical defense program,” said Ray White, president, IBC’s Engineered Materials Division. “A key attribute of our relationship with Lockheed Martin is flexibility and collaborative engineering, and we look forward to supporting future initiatives where modulus, weight and cost are critical performance factors.”
The F-35 Lightning II, a 5th generation fighter, combines advanced low observable stealth technology with fighter speed and agility, fully fused sensor information, network-enabled operations and advanced sustainment. Three distinct variants of the F-35 will replace the A-10 and F-16 for the U.S. Air Force, the F/A-18 for the U.S. Navy, the F/A-18 and AV-8B Harrier for the U.S. Marine Corps, and a variety of fighters for at least 10 other countries. Following the U.S. Marine Corps’ planned July 2015 IOC, the U.S. Air Force and Navy intend to attain IOC in Aug. 2016 and 2018, respectively.
Beralcast alloys are suited to high performance applications requiring lightweight, high stiffness parts with good thermal properties.
IBC is an integrated manufacturer and distributor of rare metals (beryllium) based alloys and related products serving a variety of industries including nuclear energy, automotive, telecommunications and a range of industrial applications. IBC has 80 employees and is headquartered in Vancouver, Canada, with production facilities in Indiana, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Missouri.