Monday, September 28, 2009

Best Composite Material Salesman: Your Senator

Senator Bob Bennett from Utah (pictured above) came up on my radar as he apparently is a big proponent of composite materials. Let's take a look at some of his 2010 Defense Appropriations Requests.

$5 million to Alliant Techsystems (ATK) "This project will fund a world-class center of excellence for fiber placement and tape-laying composite aircraft manufacturing technologies will be created, augmenting Hill Air Force Base's repair depot capabilities."

$3.6 million to Radius Engineering for "Composite Tail Rotor Blade" design and engineering.

$3.5 million to Conductive Composites Company for "Conductive Composites Nano-Materials Scale-Up Initiative"

$4 million to Hexcel Corporation for "Transitioning Stretch Broken Carbon Fiber to Production Programs"

Nice work Senator Bennett.

Researching a little further, I found an interesting Seattle Times site, where you can search earmarks with the corresponding lobbying and campaign donations for 2008. Here is the search for Hexcel. In 2008 Hexcel had $2.4 million in defense earmarks, but spent $40,500 on lobbying and $56,535 on campaign contributions. With a total investment (lobbying & contributions) of $97,035, and a return of $2.4 million, that's a pretty good ROI.

The 2008 $2.4 million earmark for "M65 Bismaleimide Carbon Fiber Prepreg" was sponsored by 8 congressman. Ironically $10,500 was contributed by Hexcel to half of those supporting congressman.

Photo Credit: Bertelmanns via flicker

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