Steel Mills

AK Steel to Build Research & Innovation Center in Ohio

Written by Sandy Williams

AK Steel announced it will build a Research and Innovation Center in Middletown, Ohio. The 120,000 square foot Center will replace an existing research facility already located in Middletown. The project is estimated at $36 million and will be constructed on a 15 acre site.

The Research and Innovation Center will house 75 researchers, scientists and engineers dedicated to performing cutting edge research, applications engineering, advanced engineering, product development, and customer technical services.

James L. Wainscott, Chairman, President and CEO of AK Steel noted, “Our talented researchers, scientists and engineers are already working to develop such innovative products as next-generation Advanced High Strength Steels (AHSS) to help automotive customers design lighter, more fuel-efficient vehicles that maintain superior strength and safety performance, high efficiency electrical steels that will help the nation’s electricity grid become more energy-efficient, and new stainless steels that offer superior corrosion resistance for a wide variety of applications. The new research and innovation center will enhance our capabilities to bring these products to the marketplace.”

The Center will also house pilot lines that simulate the company’s steel manufacturing operations, ranging from melting and casting, to hot- and cold-rolling, to final finishing. The pilot lines are used for research, enhancing existing products, problem-solving in production, and experimentation for new and improved products.

Groundbreaking is planned for late spring or early summer 2015 subject to state and local government approvals.

AK Steel also announced that effective immediately Eric Peterson is appointed Vice President, Research and Innovation. Peterson, who joined AK Steel in 1991, will have overall responsibility for the design and construction of the new facility as well as leading the effort to improve technical service and existing product offerings and the development of new and innovative steel products.

Scott Lauschke, a 20 year veteran of AK Steel, will replace Peterson as Vice President, Sales and Customer Service. He will be responsible for leading the Sales and Customer Service organization, including Carbon and Specialty Steel Sales, as well as Inside Sales, Customer Service and Inventory Planning, Products, Sales Planning and Coordination, and AK Steel International activities.

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