High purity alloys
In response to the aerospace industry's demand for premium-grade specialty alloys, Carpenter Technology has inaugurated a state-of-the-art melting facility. Its cornerstone: a 20-metric-ton (44,000-lb) vacuum induction degassing and pouring furnace.
Built by ALD Vacuum Technologies, Erlensee, Germany, the furnace features a crucible and vacuum chamber that tilt as a unit. Metallurgical and operational advantages:
Smaller vacuum volume and shorter vacuum pump cycles for precise process control.
Faster crucible changeout for more productivity.
A pouring launder to screen impurities.
Accessible power cables and hose to facilitate maintenance.
| Tilting vacuum chamber is 10 times smaller than similar-capacity static chamber.
Carpenter Technology Corp., Box 14662, Reading, PA 19612-4662, (610) 208-2524.
Space-based cable manager
Spanning 200 ft when fully extended, the ABLE Deployable Articulating mast, part of NASA JPL's 1999 Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM), stows in a 10-ft canister. Four cable harnesses weighing 459 lbs run along the mast to an outboard antenna.
Since most of the canister is devoted to storing the retracted mast, space is at a premium. That's where the cable-carrier makes a difference. The System's Plastitrak®-style carrier, molded from low-friction, UV-resistant Delrin, performs all the tasks specified by AEC-Able Engineering:
It operates in the vacuum and zero gravity of space; it protects the cables from damage while taking up little volume; and it bends in one direction only. The latter allows predictable and controllable movement.
AEC-ABLE Engineering Co., Inc., 93 Castilian Dr., Goleta, CA 93117-3091, (805) 685-2262.
Stephan Achs, Kabelschlepp America , 7100 West Marcia Rd., Milwaukee, WI 53223-3363, (414) 354-1994.