Latrobe Specialty Steel Wins Award for VIM-VAR Expansion

LATROBE, Pa., Jan. 18 /PRNewswire/ — Latrobe Specialty Steel’s VIM-VAR expansion won by unanimous vote the Association for Iron & Steel Technology’s (AIST) award for 2009 Project Excellence. AIST’s Project and Construction Management Technology Committee looked at competing projects from Allegheny Technology’s Allegheny Ludlum plate manufacturing plant and United States Steel’s coal grinding facility, but picked Latrobe Specialty Steel’s expansion.

Latrobe Specialty Steel and its partners, Continental Design and Management Group, Pittsburgh, PA and Consarc, Rancocas, NJ used a modified design-and-build technique to construct the world’s largest vacuum induction melting furnace in record time starting in the snowiest months on a brown-field site.

Dan Hennessy, Latrobe’s Vice President Manufacturing said, “Our team headed by Neal Fenton used the most modern project management tools. At the same time, they cultivated unique relationships with the construction companies, an engineering firm, a key equipment supplier and the building trades. The construction project targeted the growing demand for premium vacuum-melted steel for the essential aerospace and defense markets. As a result of this expansion, customer lead times fell precipitously from 72 weeks to about 20 weeks. I congratulate the team on an award they deserved.”

At the next AIST Pittsburgh Chapter meeting, the association will present the award to Latrobe Specialty Steel.

Latrobe Specialty Steel, in business since 1913 in Latrobe, PA, has been supplying the aerospace and defense sectors since 1958. The firm employs approximately 800 people. Find additional information about Latrobe Specialty Steel at or contact Lisa Pierce at 724-532-6324 to arrange an interview (

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January 18, 2010