Bill Chinnis

Bill Chinnis

BSMaterials Science and Engineering, 1983

Bill began his career at Allvac, an aerospace metals company located in Monroe, NC and worked primarily in the area of titanium melting technology. Responding to the needs of the commercial jet engine market, Allvac invested in a new titanium melting technique known as plasma cold hearth melting (PAM) in the late 1980s. Bill led the installation, development, and industry certification of this new technology. Later Bill partnered with two other NCSU MSE graduates Hal Lindsay (’81) and John Hoffman (’82) to form AlloyWorks LLC in Salisbury NC. Through the use of a custom designed PAM furnace, AlloyWorks simplified the manufacture of custom sized ingots for the aerospace investment casting industry. Further, AlloyWorks commercialized the production of the new generation lightweight titanium aluminide (TiAl) alloys, gaining GE’s approval in 2009 for their GeNX engine application, powering Boeing’s 787. TiAl materials replaced heavier nickel alloys used in low pressure turbine blades, contributing significantly to the increased fuel efficiency claimed by GE. Today Bill continues to assist companies worldwide with their design and operation of titanium PAM furnaces. Bill is widely recognized in the specialty metals industry for his knowledge of sophisticated melting techniques including VAR and especially PAM, where he is one of a few experts in this technology. Bill has published and presented technical papers at many of the industry’s national and world conferences.

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