HITCO hits the heights with its complex carbon-based composites. A subsidiary of SGL CARBON, the company specializes in the manufacture of composite materials, as well as large complex shaped composite structures primarily for military and commercial aircraft and marine assemblies. Carbon and graphite composite products are combined with insulation components and thermal fabrics (nonwovens and metal foils) to meet the high-temperature (and lightweight) requirements needed in the aerospace and defense, automotive, chemical processing, electronics, and power generating industries. HITCO's hits include tail cones and nacelles.
HITCO's business has recently been oriented toward SGL Group's core competency in carbon, supported by its existing composites technology. HITCO is undergoing a comprehensive modernization of its manufacturing plant; the cost is estimated at more than $19 million. The company's physical plant includes 14 large autoclaves, two automated tape laying machines, and an automated fiber placement machine.
The company's fabricated insulation division uses high temperature fabrics, nonwovens, and metal foils to create products such as firewalls, splash shields, manifold covers, and heat exchangers. It also manufactures carbon brake materials for use on military and commercial aircraft. Its REFRASIL brand silica-based woven textile products are specifically designed for high temperature use. The product line replaces asbestos and is available in a variety of forms, such as woven fabrics and tapes, non-woven blankets, bulk fiber, modules, papers, braiding yarns, sleeving, rope gasket, and cord. Applications include shipbuilding, power plants, metal fabrication, nuclear energy, glass plants, and aircraft industries.
The company offers turnkey services for complex shape composite structures for military aircraft, commercial aircraft, launch vehicles, and marine structures. The company has made assemblies for all generations of the nuclear-powered submarine, and has counted the US Navy as a customer for half a century. It provides such services as inspection and machining for its advanced composite materials and metals.
Harry I. Thompson founded "Thompson Glass and Paint Company" in 1922. The company sold window glass, plate glass, and mirrors. SGL Group, a major supplier of advanced carbon and graphite applications, bought the company in 1997 and renamed it HITCO Carbon Composites, Inc. after Harry I. Thompson.