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Alcoa Still Committed to Castings

Alcoa is by any measure a giant in the metals game, so it’s a good sign that the company has remained committed to its casting branch since purchasing Howmet in 2000.

The company recently filmed a spot for the Fox Business Network's American Icon series at the Alcoa Howmet plant in Whitehall, Mich. The setting makes sense: the investment casting facility is a leader in the production of parts for the high-tech turbine industry and immaculately maintained.

While the video features an interview with Alcoa CEO Klaus Kleinfeld and primarily is focused on the state of the international aluminum market, it opens with a discussion of the turbine blades produced at the metalcasting facility. Using the setting is the second indication this month Alcoa still puts a lot of stock in maintaining diversification through casting. On Oct. 12, Alcoa announced the Whitehall plant had shipped its 1,000th set of titanium investment castings to weapons manufacturer BAE Systems for the 155-mm M777 Howitzer program.

"Many do not realize Alcoa provides titanium, as well as aluminum solutions," said David Dobson, Alcoa Defense president, in the announcement.

If the company continues to highlight its metalcasting capabilities, that perception could change.