Aviation Manufacturer Magazine

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Issue 8

Aviation Manufacturer magazine

GLOBAL AVIATION SERVICES A SUPERIOR INTERIOR Global Aviation Services Interior is the brainchild of engineer and businessman Zeydan Öncü


Piloting Next-Gen Technologies for Complete Aircraft Design Solvay’s lightweight material solutions include carbon fiber, composites, polymer pellets, powders, films and foams for: • Maximized performance through innovative components’ design and function integration • Meeting industry ramp rates through high-volume automated processes • Reduced total cost of ownership



Electrical, Air and Fluid Systems

Interior Propulsion

the editor

Lucky dip




oeing and Airbus both publish their own studies on what the next twenty years has in store for the aviation industry. The latest Airbus report is called Global Market Forecast 2017-2036: Growing Horizons. Boeing’s report is Current Market Outlook 2017-2036. I don’t know if anyone reads these volumes from cover to cover. I just like to have a dip. The Airbus report runs to 126 pages with more charts and graphs than you can shake a stick at. Stick shaking aside, Airbus predicts that the market will require almost 35,000 new aircraft by 2036. Boeing, whose report is a mere 64 pages, projects a worldwide demand for 41,030 new aircraft over the next 20 years. The Airbus GMF forecasts 4.4 per cent growth in global annual air traffic over that period. According to Deloitte Global’s 2018 Global Aerospace and Defense Industry Outlook, which analyses the commercial aircraft and defence sectors to identify key trends, the global aerospace and defence industry is expected to see revenues accelerating by 4.1 per cent this year, almost doubling last year’s 2.1 per cent growth. Everyone agrees that income growth in large emerging markets such as China and India has been the primary driver of the increase in air travel. India is expected to become the third largest commercial aviation market by the early 2020s. The

Martin Ashcroft

middle class in both countries combined grew from 80 million in 2000 to 135 million in 2016, an increase of nearly 70 per cent. Supporting the big guns is a survey released by Jet Support Services, Inc (JSSI), an independent provider of maintenance support and financial services to the aviation industry. The JSSI Business Aviation Index tracks the use of around 2,000 business aircraft worldwide, including jets, turboprops and helicopters, and reports average flight hours flown on a monthly basis by region, industry and cabin type. For the first quarter of 2018, flight hours were at the highest level of any first quarter since 2008. All of which is good news for the aviation industry, and good news for us, as it gives us something to write about. A dip into our ‘new look’ Aviation News section will reveal where major investments are being made in anticipation of this business growth, including a mouth-watering $15 billion by UTC Aerospace in the United States, and significant sums by Lockheed Martin in Florida, Spirit Aerosystems in Oklahoma, Gulfstream in London and at home in Georgia, not to mention Godrej in India. Is your company planning a major investment? Tell us your story by email to martin@aviationmanufacturer.com.

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Cover story

global aviation services a superior interior Page 6



• The Editor: Lucky dip


• Global Aviation Services: A superior interior


• Allegiant takes delivery of its first American made Airbus A320 • Aleris to supply aluminium to Boeing


• Pratt & Whitney to invest in West Palm Beach facility • JetSuite signs up for Zunum’s electric plane


• Sikorsky delivers CH-53 King Stallion helicopters to US Marine Corps • Raytheon breaks ground on Ontario International Airport hangar


• Pratt & Whitney to build 135 engines for F-35 program


• Gulfstream selects TAG Farnborough • Spirit AeroSystems to acquire Asco


• Jet Aviation acquires Hawker Pacific • Boeing to acquire aerospace parts distributor KLX Inc


• United Technologies plans $15 billion investment in United States


• Aviation Technical Services acquires American Cooler Service

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aviation news page 17

contents 27

• Lockheed Martin opens new facility in Florida to support F-35 production


• Godrej Aerospace launches centre of excellence in Mumbai


• Skunk Works to build passenger X-plane


• Gulfstream to expand Savannah facilities • Hexcel opens facility in Casablanca


• Spirit AeroSystems opens fabrication centre of excellence in Oklahoma


• Canada invests in aerospace sector • UTC Aerospace Systems to provide nacelle system for Falcon 6X


• Safran Nacelles provides life support • Magellan Aerospace secures Airbus A330 wing rib contract


• AeroCision to become part of Bromford • Government of Canada investing in safety


• BAE Systems: Aviation innovation


• Airbus: Up for the challenge


• Porcher Industries: Airbus H-160 A new chapter in helicopter design

airbus up for the challenge page 56

BAE systems aviation innovation Page 40

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A successful career at Airbus was the perfect preparation for Zeydan Öncü to found his own company, which he now aims to develop into a fully integrated onestop-shop for cabin interiors and equipment for fixed and rotary wing aircraft.   Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com



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ounded in 2006, Global Aviation Services Interior is the brainchild of engineer and businessman Zeydan Öncü. Combining the vision and attention to detail of the engineer with the flair and imagination of the entrepreneur, GAS has quickly become a prime supplier of aircraft interior equipment and a leader in the completion and refurbishment of aircraft cabin interiors, with services including design and certification, MRO (maintenance, repair and overhaul) and VIP conversions. The company produces of a range of its own cabin interior fittings in its EASA Part 21 certified facilities in Germany, the UK and the UAE, and has also expanded into the training of pilots, crew, engineers and technicians through its Global Aviation Academy. In 2007 GAS became the first company of its kind to take space at Abu Dhabi International Airport for the provision of MRO services, refurbishment and engineering services. The facility is also used for refurbishment of a wide range of cabin equipment and parts, including design and production of galleys, crew rest compartments, bars, seat parts, military aircraft interiors, composite parts and material supplies.

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“The life cycle of an engineer is five years of creativity, followed by 25 years of modification. After completing two major projects I could see that happening to me, and it’s not what I wanted. They said I could go back to Airbus any time, but I never regretted leaving” He added knowledge and skills during his early career with DaimlerChrysler Aerospace (DASA) in Hamburg, which subsequently became EADS and later Airbus, progressing into senior management positions. Along the way he trained in personnel management and staff training, learned presentation and communication skills, how to manage teams and conduct international negotiations, as well as adding to his professional development as an engineer. He also took on board the disciplines of six sigma and project management, as well as an understanding of financial issues and supply chain management.

Business awards

Just ten years later, in October 2017, Öncü’s success was recognised with a vision and innovation award and an honour award, in addition to his being named Businessman of the Year, in the European Business Awards at the International Tourism and Trade Fair in Essen, held in conjunction with the Turkish-German Culture and Tourism Association and Markaimaj Media. So how does an engineer with a solid background and a safe career with Airbus become an award-winning entrepreneur supplying government agencies and middle eastern royal families? Öncü came to Germany in October 1979 to study aerospace engineering, first at the Technical University of Munich and then at the University of Applied Sciences in Hamburg. Now a German citizen, the multi-lingual Öncü grew up speaking Arabic and Turkish at home, and is now also comfortable with German, French and English.

Öncü played a leading role in the development of the Airbus A380 as data processing manager and then from June 1999 as head of concurrent engineering in Toulouse, France, reporting to senior vice president Juergen Thomas. “After that I was seconded to the A400M programme, Airbus’s turboprop military transport aircraft, as head of the component management integration team in Bremen for the most complicated component on the aircraft, the centre fuselage.” The team consisted of six international component design build teams, with around 400-500 engineers and related managers. “I was responsible for the delivery of the A400M centre fuselage in respect of time, cost, quality and performance parameters.” Öncü left in 2004 after receiving an invitation from Spekon, a supplier of thermal and acoustic insulation products to Airbus, to come in and restructure the struggling company. Spekon was renamed Olutex, moved its operations alongside Airbus in Toulouse, returned a profit at the end of 2004, and was subsequently acquired by Hutchinson Aerospace. People were surprised that Öncü took the job, but he was ready for a change. “The life cycle of an engineer,” he says with a wry smile, “is five years of creativity, followed by 25 years of modification. After completing two major projects I could see that happening to me, and it’s not what I wanted. They said I could go back to Airbus any time, but I never regretted leaving.”

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It would be hard to design a better preparation for an engineering entrepreneur. The only missing ingredient was an opportunity, which arrived by chance, as opportunities often do. The skill of the entrepreneur lies in recognising the opportunity and taking the chance. “While I was at Spekon I was talking to the head of procurement for Airbus one day about an order from Turkish Airlines. He thought this was ‘up my street’, so he invited me on a business trip to Turkey and I went along for the ride. I was not expecting anything, but I came away from that trip with my first contract. You don’t expect a major airline to award a contract to a company that was not already well known in the industry, but I didn’t even have a company at that time. It all happened through the trust of the Airbus management, and the senior management of Turkish Airlines.” Öncü soon assembled some key personnel, then bought a factory in Llanelli in Wales, the dormant business of CF Taylor, a subsidiary of B/E Aerospace that had previously manufactured kitchen galleys for aircraft cabins, and sleeping accommodation for flight crews. “We got CAA approval there and we produced the whole order to retrofit seven aircraft interiors for the Turkish Airlines A340 Retrofit programme and three A310 crew rest compartments, on our own.” The UK manufacturing facilities have since been moved to Milton Keynes. After opening the facilities in the UAE and earning a Part 145 AMO (approved maintenance organisation) certificate, the first job there was to retrofit a Dash 8 Q300 from

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passenger configuration to VIP for the Crown Prince of UAE, and a Dash 8 Q400 for the President of UAE. “We also converted two helicopters for the United Armed forces of UAE, a Super Puma from VIP to utility and an AW 139 from passenger to VIP.” In 2010 GAS opened a retrofit centre in Rothenberg in Germany and was awarded a contract from Zodiac for the production of galleys. In 2013 it was awarded a contract by government-owned Turkmenistan Airlines for eight helicopter conversions. “The first one was an EMS conversion (emergency medical systems) on a Super Puma for the Ministry of Health,” says Öncü, “and we did it in 86 days, including the design, production, installation, flight test and certification. That was an unbeatable time scale in the aerospace industry.”


The second one, a conversion for SAR (search and rescue), was also a challenge. “We delivered a Super Puma L2 helicopter to the Ministry of Defence of Turkmenistan,” says Öncü. “As well as the installation of a searchlight, FLIR system (thermal imaging cameras), winch, command centre, EMS kit and the rest of the cabin, we replaced the hinged door with a sliding door – and that’s a major modification. We did that in five months.” The Turkmenistan Ministry of Internal Affairs took the other five helicopters, three EC145s and two Sikorsky S-76C VIP helicopters, the last of which was delivered in September last year converted into escort helicopters for the President of Turkmenistan. One of GAS’ current projects is the conversion of an Airbus A300-600 for the Iranian Red Crescent from a passenger aircraft into a flying hospital, including two onboard pharmacies and an abundance of high technology features. It’s the biggest aircraft conversion ever undertaken, anywhere. Another project is the conversion of two C-130 Hercules cargo planes for the Air Force – one for medical use and the other for VIPs. “The C-130J already has a lot of fixtures and fittings for various attachments, and that makes our life easier,” says Öncü. “We also have all the details of the aircraft and its parts in 3D on our CAD/CAM system. This project is in the development phase. The technology is one of our strengths.”

“We divide the job into different work packages, and we appoint a leader for each one, setting out time, cost, quality and performance (TCQP) parameters for each stage. Each work package leader has his own budget and his own time schedule, integrated to the TCQP for the whole project”

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Technology and methodology

In a very short space of time, GAS has developed a unique way of working, using the latest, most advanced, conversion technology. “The design and development of a helicopter interior usually takes between four and six months,” says Öncü. “We have reduced that by 90 per cent by using 3D scanning and reverse engineering. We scan the helicopter directly to 3D which speeds up the engineering process. “Within ten days we can produce manufacturing drawings. This is an unbeatable time scale. We are the only ones who are using this. Airbus has quoted 18 months for the delivery of the EMS helicopter. We delivered it in 86 days. We managed that by using advanced technologies, rather than a huge number of engineers. This is what we won the Innovation award for.” The technology is a vital ingredient, but you also need skilled engineers. GAS has recruited some of the best from all over the world. “We use around 60 people, all skilled in their own disciplines, says Öncü. “Some specialise in the interior, others in the exterior. We have people from Canada, the US, the UK and Europe. Our capabilities include the black box implementation – the CVR (cockpit voice recorder) and FDR (flight data recorder). This involves a complete cockpit upgrade, including the integration of all the signal systems from nose to tail.”

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“The design and development of a helicopter interior usually takes between four and six months. We have reduced that by 90 per cent by using 3D scanning and reverse engineering”

GAS ensures that the technology and the skills of the engineers are employed to best effect with a meticulous approach to the organisation of the project. The production method is a crucial factor in achieving results that will delight the customer in an unprecedented timescale. “We have a multi-disciplinary way of working, with interdisciplinary communication,” Öncü explains. “The first thing is to listen carefully to the customer’s requirements and agree on a common understanding with them. Then you must assess the capabilities of the helicopter so you don’t disturb anything that might affect the aerodynamics or its flight characteristics. After that we divide the job into different work packages, and we appoint a work package leader for each one, setting out time, cost, quality and performance (TCQP) parameters for each stage. Each work package leader has his own budget and his own time schedule, integrated to the TCQP for the whole project.” A typical project would be organised into defined work stages including the definition and consolidation of requirements, the parameters of each step, followed by conceptual design, definition of equipment required, then detailed 3D configurations of the internal layout of the equipment. Before anything can be added, of course, all the old fittings must be dismantled and removed.

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GAS now has three facilities where this work is carried out – Rothenburg in Germany, Milton Keynes in the UK, and Abu Dhabi in the UAE. “In Rothenburg we have our own runway and our own helipad,” says Öncü. “We also have hangars to accommodate both rotor and fixed wing aircraft, and our management is here, too.” Many of the purpose designed components are manufactured on site, specifically for each project, including the lavatories, galleys, overhead bins, pelmets, glass dividers, and the like. “We don’t do mass production,” says Öncü. “We make

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individual components for specific aircraft – purpose built, one-off solutions. These are high quality fittings. That is why we are a one-stop shop. We don’t produce the black boxes or the searchlights or the FLIR systems, obviously. We buy those in. We don’t make the medical equipment, either, but we design and manufacture everything involved in the installation of it.” Everything has to be fitted according to a carefully designed plan. You can’t have oxygen bottles and infusion hooks rolling around the floor of a helicopter. That means all the fitments


“We have trained 28 pilots and 17 technicians based on EASA 147 certification, so far. We also train cabin technicians and cabin mechanics in retrofit and conversion. Ninety per cent of the people we train get a job immediately with Airbus!” and fittings have to be designed specifically for the particular appliance or equipment, and also for the particular helicopter. Seating for the crew, housing for the stretchers, cabinets for medical implements and drugs. From ventilators to defibrillators, to electrocardiography unit, there’s a lot of equipment to fit in, and everything needs to be secure, yet easy to access.

Global Aviation Academy

Another recent development for GAS is the Global Aviation Academy, launched in 2015, and accredited with EN 29990 and EASA 147 certification, the international standard for a learning provider offering non-formal education or training. “We have trained 28 pilots and 17 technicians based on EASA 147 certification, so far,” says Öncü. “We also train cabin technicians and cabin mechanics in retrofit and conversion. Ninety per cent of the people we train get a job immediately with Airbus!” The next step is to start an Academy in Turkey. GAS is also expanding its production and service facilities with the construction of a new hangar near Berlin, which will have its own runway. This will be a manufacturing and MRO, retrofit and conversion centre, and is expected to open in September 2018. The next major project after that is a joint venture in Saudi Arabia. “We were contacted by a very important sheik in Riyadh who is equipping military vehicles,” says Öncü. “We have agreed to do a joint venture there for the retrofit and conversion of helicopters for the army. So far we have 51 helicopters lined up for it. Because of the war with Yemen there are a lot of aircraft grounded, needing refurbishment, maintenance and adaptation engineering.”

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Have a news story or press release you would like to be considered for publication in the next Aviation Manufacturer Magazine? Please contact Martin Ashcroft at martin@aviationmanufacturer.com www.aviationmanufacturer.com

AVIATION NEWS ALLEGIANT TAKES DELIVERY OF ITS FIRST AMERICAN MADE AIRBUS A320 "Operating a single fleet type will increase efficiency in teams across the company”


llegiant has welcomed its first US-produced A320 aircraft from the Airbus US Manufacturing Facility in Mobile, Alabama. A team of Allegiant employees and executives from the company's headquarters in Las Vegas joined Airbus' leadership team at the production facility for a special ceremony to officially mark the delivery. The aircraft is the 11th of 13 new A320 aircraft to be inducted into Allegiant's fleet this year. The first ten were assembled in Airbus facilities in Toulouse, France and Hamburg, Germany. The delivery marks another step in Allegiant's planned transition to a single fleet type by the end of 2018. Allegiant currently has a total of 99 Airbus aircraft either in service or committed for future delivery.

"It's exciting to see the progress we've made in our transition to an all-Airbus fleet, and gratifying to be able to celebrate this special milestone with team members whose hard work and dedication have made it possible," said Maury Gallagher, Allegiant president and CEO. "Operating a single fleet type will increase efficiency in teams across the company – including training, scheduling, and maintenance – while bringing economic benefits like greater fuel efficiency and additional seat capacity." Las Vegas-based Allegiant links travellers in small and mid-sized cities to world-class leisure destinations, offering low fares, hotel rooms and rental cars exclusively through the company’s website. Beginning with one aircraft and one route in 1999, the company has since grown to more than 80 aircraft and 350 routes across the country.



oeing has signed a multi-year contract with Aleris for the supply of aluminium plate and sheet for use in applications across its commercial airplane models. "Our strength lies in the combination of strategically located production facilities and a continuous focus on enhancing our product offering," said Sean Stack, Aleris Chairman and CEO.

"We are committed to service and innovation to meet Boeing's high expectations in a particularly competitive environment." Headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, Aleris operates production facilities in North America, Europe and Asia and is well positioned to support the growth of the aerospace industry in the coming years. Boeing's current market outlook projects a worldwide demand for 41,030 new airplanes over the next 20 years.

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harter operator JetSuite has agreed to become the launch customer for a 12-seater hybrid-electric aircraft being developed by Seattle-based Zunum Aero. The agreement is for up to 100 aircraft, which could be used for JetSuite's private jet charter business as well as its JetSuiteX regional airline. Delivery is expected to commence in 2022.


ratt & Whitney, a division of United Technologies Corp, is to invest up to $100 million in its existing West Palm Beach facility, creating up to 215 new jobs by 2022 supporting the company's defense programs. “This investment will support the vital needs of our defense customers,” said Dave Carter, senior vice president of engineering at Pratt & Whitney, “and there's no better home for it than West Palm, where we test the F-135 engine for the F-35 Lightning II aircraft.”

Zunum is backed by JetBlue Technology Ventures and Boeing HorizonX venture capital funds. The new aircraft (the first electric passenger-carrying platform in the industry) is expected to start with a hybrid-electric drive system before graduating to a fully-electric layout as battery technology improves. It will carry up to 12 passengers and undertake flights up to 1,000 miles. Zunum, based in Kirkland, Washington, says the planes will cruise at speeds up to 340 mph and require just 2,200 feet of runway for take off.

The company said the $100 million investment will support the expansion of the campus and the new equipment needed for manufacturing, engineering and the development of new technologies. Pratt & Whitney opened its original 7,000-acre facility in West Palm Beach in 1958, focusing on engineering and research. In 2014, the company opened its 97,000-square foot West Palm Beach Engine Center and state-of-the-art engine production facility. Pratt & Whitney's programs rely on more than 100 suppliers throughout the Southeast United States, with 23 key suppliers based in Florida.

Zunum Aero CEO Ashish Kumar said the company was on track to begin flight testing its innovative drive system on existing airframes in 2019, with certification of the technology expected in 2021 or early 2022. The full airframe with the hybrid electric drive system is not expected to fly until 2020 or 2021.

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ikorsky has delivered the first of an expected 200 CH-53 King Stallion heavy lift helicopters to the US Marine Corps. The CH-53K is the new build replacement for the Marine Corps' aging CH-53E Super Stallion fleet, which first flew in 1974 and entered service with the USMC in 1981.

“This first CH-53K heavy lift helicopter will be stationed at Marine Corps Air Station New River in Jacksonville, North Carolina”



aytheon Company and the Ontario International Airport Authority have broken ground on a hangar that will house Raytheon's flying test bed platform. The RMT, a modified 727 airliner, conducts airborne test and evaluation on a variety of technologies, including radars, electro-optical/infra-red sensors, avionics and other systems. "Tomorrow's sensor systems are already in the sky today because of the real-world, in-flight testing occurring on Raytheon's multiprogram test bed," said Rick Yuse, president of Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems. "The groundbreaking is an important step toward housing this technological asset in Ontario, California."

"With 18 additional aircraft in various stages of production already, the entire Sikorsky team, in partnership with our suppliers, is looking forward to additional deliveries to delight our customer,” said Dan Schultz, Sikorsky President and former CH-53 pilot. This first CH-53K heavy lift helicopter will be stationed at Marine Corps Air Station New River in Jacksonville, North Carolina, where the helicopter will enter into a Supportability Test Plan. US Marines will conduct a logistics assessment on the maintenance, sustainment and overall aviation logistics support of the King Stallion, which will ensure readiness and support on the flightline when CH-53K helicopters enter into service with the USMC. The heavy lift helicopter made its international debut, demonstrating its manoeuvrability and advanced fly-by-wire technology, at the recent ILA Berlin Air Show in Germany. Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin company, is preparing its manufacturing facility in Stratford, Connecticut, to house CH-53K production beginning this summer, and expects to deliver its second CH-53K helicopter to the USMC in early 2019.

Alan D. Wapner, president of the Ontario International Airport Authority, welcomed the newest addition to Southern California's fastest growing airport. "Raytheon's move to ONT is consistent with the Commission's vision for the airport to be a magnet for economic development in the region – one that is low-cost, business friendly and customer focused, not to mention innovative and collaborative in its approach with airport tenants and vendors." Ontario International (ONT) Airport is located in the Inland Empire, approximately 35 miles east of downtown Los Angeles in the centre of Southern California. The Raytheon hangar will complete construction later this year.

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he US Department of Defense has ordered another batch of F135 engines from Pratt & Whitney to power all three variants of the F-35 Lightning II aircraft program. The contract award for the 11th lot of propulsion systems will cover 135 of the F135 engines, a coincidence not explained in the announcement, as well as program management, engineering support, production support, spare modules and spare parts.

The latest contract continues to support program affordability initiatives with a slight reduction in price. "This agreement for the next lot of F135 engines represents a fair deal for the US Government, the international partnership and industry," said Vice Admiral Mat Winter, F-35 Program Executive Officer. "Affordability is our number one priority, and by working together, we are making steady progress in reducing F-35 propulsion costs." The total award for the Lot 11 propulsion systems is approximately $2 billion. In general, the unit recurring flyaway (URF) price for the 110 LRIP Lot 11 conventional take-off and landing (CTOL) and carrier variant (CV) propulsion systems will be reduced 0.34 per cent from the previously negotiated LRIP Lot 10 URF. The URF price for the 25 LRIP Lot 11 short take-off and

vertical landing (STOVL) propulsion systems (including lift systems) will be reduced 3.39 per cent from the previously negotiated LRIP Lot 10 URF. "Pratt & Whitney and our supply chain remain committed to continual cost reduction for the F135 engine and to providing a superior product at the best value for our US and international customers," said John Wiedemer, vice president, F135 Program, Pratt & Whitney. "Since 2009 we have reduced the production cost of the F135 by more than half and are now pursuing additional affordability initiatives to drive down engine production and sustainment costs even further throughout the F-35's planned lifecycle." Pratt & Whitney is a division of United Technologies Corp.

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finishing is only the beginning TNM is specialized in surface finishing for the aviation industry and its goal is to provide their customers with “one stop shop”.TNM is a fully approved facility for Bombardier, Airbus and Boeing along with many other major OEMs and we’re in the process of also getting fully approved for Lockheed Martin. Our Mission “Our mission is to be amongst the elite processors for surface finishing. We are committed to providing superior value and service to our customers and sustained profitability to our stakeholders by investing in our people and services. At TNM “FINISHING IS ONLY THE BEGINNING”. Why TNM?

• Approvals for all Major OEMs • Capacity for small, medium and Large Parts • Various Type of treatments • Aggressive Lead Time • On Time Delivery, Quality and Services are guaranteed • Certified for ISO 9001, AS9100, NADCAP

TNM has been awarded as one of Top Shops in North America for a second consecutive year and are a finalist for the Gilles Demers 2016 Award attributed by the Québec aerospace community for being a leader in commitment to innovation, wealth creation and outreach and business development and internationalization.

21 Chemin de l’aviation, Pointe -Claire, QC, H9R 4Z2, Tel: (514) 429-7777 Fax : (514) 429 -5108 www.tnminc.ca General Manager, Michel Martel : 514-209-1024

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ulfstream Aerospace Corp has announced an expansion of its maintenance, repair and overhaul operation in the London area with a new, larger, purposebuilt facility at TAG Farnborough Airport, which is expected to be operational by the third quarter of 2020.




pirit AeroSystems has agreed to acquire SRIF, the parent company of Asco Industries, for $650 million in cash. Asco designs and manufactures wing structures, mechanical assemblies and components for OEMs and Tier1 suppliers in the global commercial aerospace and military markets.

“In recent months, we’ve announced several new MRO facilities and expansions, including in Van Nuys, California; Appleton, Wisconsin; Savannah and now the United Kingdom,” said Derek Zimmerman, president, Gulfstream Product Support. “The growth of the Gulfstream fleet and increased size of our aircraft are driving the need for continued growth and additional capacity in our service centre network. Across our US and international sites, we strive to provide customers with an exemplary experience in modern, purpose-driven service centres that maximize operational quality and efficiency.” The company is committed to remaining in the London area, which has the highest volume of Gulfstream traffic in Europe. London is home to the company’s European Parts Distribution Centre near Heathrow Airport and Sales and Design Centre in Mayfair. Gulfstream has more than 225 aircraft based in Europe, along with 180 in the Middle East and Africa. “We chose TAG Farnborough Airport because it is a London gateway airport dedicated exclusively to business aviation,” Zimmerman said. “Frequented by many of our operators, it offers amenities that complement our brand, with the space required for our current construction plans and future growth.” Gulfstream’s existing MRO at London Luton Airport has seen a significant increase in on-site traffic and road trips for several years. The site has grown to more than 250 employees. All of Gulfstream’s current capabilities at Luton, which include maintenance authorizations from the US Federal Aviation Administration, European Aviation Safety Agency and more than 20 other civil aviation authorities, will be replicated at Farnborough.

"Asco is a compelling fit for Spirit that aligns extremely well with the strategic priorities we have been communicating,” said Spirit president and CEO Tom Gentile. “Specifically, it expands our Airbus content on A320 and A350 wings, adds new defence content on the F-35 and broadens our commercial capabilities to help grow our fabrication business.” Asco employs approximately 1,400 people across four highly automated state-of-the-art facilities in Vancouver, British Columbia, Stillwater, Oklahoma, Gedern, Germany, and its headquarters in Zaventem, Belgium. Representative commercial aerospace programs include A320, A350 XWB, A380, 737, 787, C-Series and E2. Representative military programs include F-35, A400M, and KC-390. The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2018.

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o enhance its growing services business, Boeing has agreed to acquire aerospace parts distributor KLX Inc for $4.25 billion in an all-cash transaction. The acquisition will include KLX's Aerospace Solutions Group, but is conditional upon the successful divestment and separation of its Energy Services Group.

"Our customers have long desired a supplier who could offer 100 per cent of their requirements for fasteners, consumables and expendables”


et Aviation has completed its acquisition of Hawker Pacific, a leading provider of civil MRO, fleet and FBO services, and aircraft sales across Asia Pacific and the Middle East. The transaction is valued at US$250 million. "We are now in a position to further expand our current portfolio, enter new markets across Asia-Pacific and the Middle East, and offer more options and value to our customers worldwide,” said Rob Smith, president of Jet Aviation. “Bringing together these two well-established brands reinforces our position as one of the world's leading business aviation service providers." The acquisition brings Jet Aviation another 19 locations across Asia Pacific and the Middle East, including 7 FBOs, 14 MRO facilities and over 400,000 sq ft of hangar space. More than 800 employees will also transfer to the company. Jet Aviation, a wholly owned subsidiary of General Dynamics, was founded in Switzerland in 1967. The company provides maintenance, completions and refurbishment, engineering, FBO and fuel services, along with aircraft management, charter services and personnel services.

KLX Inc is a major independent provider of aviation parts and services in the aerospace industry. Its capabilities include global parts distribution and supply chain services for aerospace and defence industries worldwide. KLX Inc will become part of Boeing Global Services and fully integrated with Aviall. KLX Inc is also a leading supplier of chemical composites, thus broadening the scope of Aviall’s offering. "This acquisition is the next step in our services growth strategy, with a clear opportunity to profitably grow our business and better serve our customers in a $2.6 trillion, 10-year services market," said Stan Deal, president and CEO of Boeing Global Services. "By combining the talent and product offerings of Aviall and KLX Inc, we will provide a one-stop-shop that will benefit our supply chain and our various customers in a meaningful way." The employees and operations of KLX Inc's Aerospace Solutions Group will be integrated with Aviall, and its Miami facilities are expected to remain the principal operating location. "Our customers have long desired a supplier who could offer essentially 100 per cent of their requirements for fasteners, consumables and expendables,” said Amin Khoury, KLX Chairman and CEO. “The combination of Aviall and KLX Aerospace facilitates the broadest scope of parts and products to support all customer fleet types for the commercial, military and defence and business and general aviation markets. This business combination will enable us to deliver industry-leading valueadded service solutions for our customers, and outstanding growth opportunities for our suppliers."

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nited Technologies has announced plans to hire 35,000 people and make investments of more than $15 billion in research and development and capital expenditures in the United States over the next five years. UTC has also launched a dedicated website to highlight its investments in the US: www.utcinvestingintheusa.com About $9 billion is expected to be spent on R&D initiatives to accelerate the firm's digital strategy. It will also include work on next-generation additive manufacturing, artificial intelligence and autonomy, hybrid-electric, cybersecurity and the advancement of high-temperature materials. The remaining $6 billion is expected to go towards CapEx initiatives that will drive innovation across existing US manufacturing facilities to increase capacity and improve quality and efficiency. Recent CapEx investments include: • The opening of a new 80,000 square-foot manufacturing and nacelle assembly facility on UTC Aerospace Systems’ campus in Foley, Alabama. • A $97 million investment in Pratt & Whitney’s AutoAir facility in Lansing, Michigan, including a new 93,000 square-foot facility and advanced manufacturing technologies, which will enable the site to triple its production capacity.

• A $450 million investment in Pratt & Whitney’s facility in Columbus, Georgia for the purchase of automated machinery and equipment upgrades, including a new engine test cell, and the construction of two new buildings intended to increase the production of parts and maintenance services while also reducing costs for new and existing engine programs. Half of United Technologies' hiring is expected to be in production and maintenance roles, which involves the manufacturing, installation and servicing of the company's vast array of products. The other half will be professional and managerial positions with more than one-third filling a wide range of engineering and technology development roles, including many that reflect the company's increased focus on digital innovation. "Our investments reflect our core belief that, similar to US economic goals, United Technologies' continued success will be dependent on a highly-skilled workforce, world class manufacturing facilities, and workforce education programs that enable employees to improve their skills and remain competitive in an increasingly digital economy," said Gregory J Hayes, Chairman & CEO, United Technologies Corporation.

Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com  25

proven engineering capabilities TJW has been manufacturing precision metal components for the world’s most demanding markets since 1983. Using cutting edge technology and advanced engineering techniques to provide outstanding services all from locations Dursley, Gloucestershire and Stourbridge, West Midlands. TJW provides a “one-stop shop” for finished components for the aerospace, automotive, oil & gas, nuclear, medical, OEM and metrology industries.

TJW offers: • Flexible production quantities through • CNC Milling & Turning • Wire Erosion • Spark Erosion • CNC Waterjet cutting • Anodising (ABP1 1023 & Nylon Coating ABP1 4045)

*** TSA (AIPS 02 01 003) capability from January 2017 ***



viation Technical Services (ATS) has acquired American Cooler Service (ACS) Inc, a company that specializes in heat exchangers, fuel systems, pneumatics, and electromechanical components.


"We now can offer customers three new product ranges including heat exchangers, oil coolers and fuel heaters”


ockheed Martin has formally opened a new manufacturing facility in Pinellas Park, Florida to support the increasing F-35 production rate. The facility is expected to create more than 80 new jobs by mid-2019.

Located in Dallas, Texas, ACS is an FAA / EASA Part 145 Repair Station, with over twenty years’ experience in maintenance solutions. The acquisition creates a broader product offering for ATS customers in the aviation accessory aftermarket business. "The addition of ACS marks another milestone in ATS' acquisition strategy of providing a full solution set for our OEM and commercial customers," said ATS President Brian Hirshman. "We now can offer customers three new product ranges including heat exchangers, oil coolers and fuel heaters. This complements our existing product and service offering and allows us to provide a seamless solution across the spectrum of aftermarket business." Founded in 1970, and headquartered in Everett, Washington, ATS offers component services, airframe maintenance and engineering support in six repair stations across the United States. The addition of ACS falls under the component services division, where it joins other companies that ATS has acquired over the past few years including Texas Pneumatic Systems, Aviation Industry Repair and Texas Air Composites. The integration of the two companies became effective in late March with no operational disruption. The purchase price was not disclosed as both companies are privately held. ACS will continue to operate under the American Cooler Service brand.

Lockheed Martin currently employs approximately 270 people at the Pinellas Park operation, between Clearwater and St Petersburg on the western coast of Florida. The new facility will assemble canopies and bulkheads for the F-35 Lightning II program. The expanded work is a result of the rapid growth of the F-35 production program. The facility adds 65,500 square feet of manufacturing and office space and is expected to begin delivering parts to the main F-35 production facility in Fort Worth, Texas, by mid-summer. In 2018 alone, the Pinellas facility will deliver more than 200 F-35 components to support production and sustainment of the growing F-35 fleet. Lockheed Martin operations employ about 14,400 people in Florida. An additional 500 jobs are planned in Orlando by the end of 2019. Work on the F-35 in Florida includes 97 businesses employing nearly 22,500 direct and indirect jobs.

Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com  27

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odrej Aerospace, a unit of Godrej & Boyce Mfg. Co. Ltd, has opened a centre of excellence in Mumbai, India, to enhance its manufacturing capabilities in the aero engine industry.

and deepen our wonderful partnership with Rolls-Royce and establish Godrej as their preferred partner." Rolls-Royce has recently expanded its partnership with Godrej by awarding contracts worth INR 2000 million (USD 30 million) spread over the next five years, for unison rings, complex fabrications and external brackets which will up in 600 different parts across Rollsintegrated end Royce’s civil aerospace engine portfolio.

After an investment of INR 500 million, the newly inaugurated CoE will be one of the best aerospace facilities in India for the manufacture of aerospace brackets. The facility's metallurgy capability “We have an includes inconel, stainless steel and titanium. facility meeting the It will commence manufacturing in bulk to diverse demanding prove production readiness within the next two-three months. requirements of

"The expansion of partnership with Godrej & Boyce for manufacturing of aero engine components showcases our commitment to developing an aerospace ecosystem in the "Godrej has been a pioneer in developing fabrication, machining, country,” said Kishore Jayaraman, Rolls-Royce advanced capabilities in aerospace assembly and testing” President for India and South Asia. “We manufacturing in the country and has very are constantly developing and rationalising ably served the domestic programme for close to three strategic partnerships across our supply chain. With the decades,” said Jamshyd Godrej, chairman and managing expansion of this partnership with Godrej & Boyce, our director of Godrej & Boyce. “We have an integrated focus will be to meet our customers' strategic requirements facility meeting the diverse demanding requirements of in quality, cost and delivery." fabrication, machining, assembly and testing, with all Godrej Aerospace began to contribute to the global aircraft associated capabilities for special processes for making industry in 2005 with simple machine components and over precision components and assemblies for aerospace a period of time has partnered with several global OEMs for applications. In line with our vision to expand our footprint the supply of sheet metal and tubing assemblies, actuators, and partner with global majors, we have established this and other complex structures. centre of excellence. I am confident that this will strengthen

Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com  29



in Palmdale, California, according to a preliminary design ASA has awarded Lockheed Martin Skunk Works a it developed under NASA's Quiet Supersonic Technology contract to design, build and flight test the Low(QueSST) effort. Boom Flight Demonstrator, an X-plane designed to revive the commercial viability of NASA hopes to establish an acceptable “QueSST’s ‘heartbeat’ will supersonic passenger air travel. commercial supersonic noise standard

be dramatically quieter than

to overturn current regulations banning "It is super exciting to be back designing the traditional ‘N-wave’ sonic commercial supersonic travel over land. and flying X-planes at this scale," boom associated with current This aircraft is shaped to separate the said Jaiwon Shin, NASA's associate supersonic aircraft” shocks and expansions associated with administrator for aeronautics. "Our long supersonic flight to reduce the volume of tradition of solving the technical barriers of the shaped signature. QueSST’s ‘heartbeat’ supersonic flight to benefit everyone continues." will be dramatically quieter than the traditional ‘N-wave’ Lockheed Martin Skunk Works has partnered with sonic boom associated with current supersonic aircraft. NASA for more than a decade on the next generation of The X-plane is designed to fly at Mach 1.4 at 55,000 feet, and commercial supersonic aircraft. It will build a full-scale experimental aircraft, known as an X-plane, at its facilities will conduct its first flight in 2021.

Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com


AVIATION NEWS GULFSTREAM TO EXPAND SERVICE FACILITIES IN SAVANNAH Gulfstream Aerospace Corp is to build a new service centre at Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport in response to its growing customer fleet's needs for maintenance and service. The service centre is expected to open in the second quarter of 2019 and create about 200 jobs.



"This expansion is the result of strong and steady fleet growth and the arrival of the Gulfstream G500 and G600” Advanced composite materials manufacturer Hexcel has officially opened a new $20 million stateof-the art manufacturing facility at the MidParc Free Trade Zone in Casablanca. Here, Hexcel will transform lightweight honeycomb materials into engineered core parts for aerospace applications including aircraft structures, engine nacelles and helicopter blades. The site is expected to employ more than 200 people by 2020, and it made its first customer delivery last December.

Gulfstream Aerospace Corp is to build a new service centre at Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport in response to its growing customer fleet's needs for maintenance and service. The service centre is expected to open in the second quarter of 2019 and create about 200 jobs. Gulfstream will invest approximately $55 million to build the 202,000-square-foot maintenance, repair and overhaul facility on the east side of the airport. The building will include hangar space, offices and back shops, and will complement the main Gulfstream Savannah Service Center, the world's largest purpose-built business jet maintenance facility. "This expansion of our customer service and support organization is the result of the strong and steady fleet growth we've had for several years and the arrival of the Gulfstream G500 and G600 in the coming months," said Mark Burns, president, Gulfstream. "As we've announced recently, we're also growing to meet customer needs in Appleton, Wisconsin, and Van Nuys, California. These new facilities will keep us well-positioned for support, maintenance and refurbishment of the Gulfstream fleet, which is now at nearly 2,700 aircraft and continues to grow." In addition to Savannah, Gulfstream operates service centres in Brunswick, Georgia; Long Beach, California; Cahokia, Illinois; Appleton, Wisconsin; Dallas, Texas; Beijing; Sorocaba, Brazil; and Luton, England.

The Moroccan plant is part of Hexcel’s ongoing worldwide investment to create a diversified and robust global supply chain to support aerospace customers’ growing demand for engineered core. In recent years, Hexcel has increased capacity at existing plants to support its engineered core business and plans further expansions to capture additional opportunities in a global market with excellent growth potential. “We could not be more pleased to become neighbours here in Midparc with our customers including Airbus, Boeing, Safran and Bombardier,” said Hexcel’s Nick Stanage. “This facility is critical to our success because it positions us to secure additional growth with our aerospace customers in Morocco and around the world.”

Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com  31

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pirit AeroSystems has officially opened its second centre of excellence for the fabrication of complex commercial and military aircraft parts. Located at the company's site in McAlester, Oklahoma, the facility will support current customer contracts as well as taking on new work in the global aerostructures market. "We announced plans last year to create a three- and fouraxis fabrication centre of excellence to support the growth of our fabrication capabilities to a billion-dollar business for the company," said Spirit president and CEO Tom Gentile. "Rather than moving work to Mexico, we imported 18 new machines from a shop in Juarez. We began producing parts for customers in McAlester last year, and the site has capacity to bring in more machines as demand increases." The new McAlester centre specializes in small- to mediumsized parts. The purchase and installation of new equipment began in 2017, since when more than half of the 1,000 parts scheduled for production have been through their first article inspection. "Along with the new five-axis centre

of excellence that was unveiled in Wichita in February, the centre in McAlester further solidifies our competitive advantage for fabrication work," said Spirit senior vice president of global fabrication Kevin Matthies. Spirit AeroSystems designs and builds aerostructures for both commercial and defence customers. With headquarters in Wichita, Kansas, the company's core products include fuselages, pylons, nacelles and wing components for the world's premier aircraft. As well as its US operations, Spirit also operates the former BAE Systems Aerostructures site in Scotland, along with facilities in France and Malaysia. "The opening of Spirit's centre of excellence in McAlester is further evidence that Oklahoma is one of the world's premier destinations for the aerospace and defence industries," said Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin, pictured here with Spirit president and CEO Tom Gentile. "We are appreciative of Spirit's confidence in our state and the industry, and are excited for the opportunities this will create for Oklahomans.”

Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com  33





SACS GmbH Robert-Bosch-Straße 15 · 72186 · EMPFINGEN · GERMANY www.sacs.aero

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The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, has announced an investment of $49.5 million in an aerospace consortium led by Bell Helicopter Textron Canada Ltd. Minister Bains made the announcement during Aéro-Montréal's Aerospace Innovation Forum. The investment is being made through the Government’s Strategic Innovation Fund. The funding will help Bell and 18 industry and academic partners develop innovative technologies to be integrated into next-generation helicopters, which

“The funding will help Bell and 18 industry and academic partners develop innovative technologies to be integrated into nextgeneration helicopters” can fly with or without a crew on board, and fully autonomous aerial systems. Other innovations include technologies to make aircraft more energy efficient and environmentally sustainable as well as technology to reduce noise pollution. The collaboration is projected to create or maintain more than 300 jobs in Canada, contribute almost $178 million to Canada's GDP over the next five years and strengthen Canada's position as a world-leading centre for innovation. The 18 industry and academic partners include Pratt & Whitney Canada, CMC Electronics, Esterline Technologies Corporation, several small and medium-sized businesses, and nine Canadian universities. Bell and its partners are investing more than $125 million in Canada's aerospace industry through this project.



TC Aerospace Systems has been selected by Dassault Aviation to provide an advanced nacelle system for its new Falcon 6X. The integrated system will employ lightweight composites and will include an integrated power plant, including an advanced inlet configuration that reduces community noise and increases fuel efficiency, fan cowls, an improved compact thrust reverser and an engine build-up (EBU) system. The agreement represents a return to the business and corporate jet nacelle market for UTC Aerospace Systems. "This program will enable us to bring the many new nacelle system technology advancements we've developed and matured for large commercial aircraft over the last 15 years to the business and corporate jet market," said Aerostructures President Marc Duvall. "We are also delighted to again be working with Dassault Aviation." Dassault Aviation has chosen the Pratt & Whitney PurePower PW812D engine to power the new aircraft, which is targeted for entry into service in 2022.

Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com  35


Precision Pride


Manifold Assemblies The greatest value proposition at Crissair lies within Manifold Assemblies. With the product range to cover all necessary fluid control components for most manifold applications, Crissair’s engineers optimize designs for performance, weight, cost, and schedule simultaneously. With over 12,000 products in the library, Crissair can easily package manifold assemblies using qualified valves with years of proven service. Click here to view a sampling of Crissair manifold assemblies. To find out how Crissair products can enhance your next application contact our Business Development team at www.crissair.com or 661.367.3300.

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t the MRO Americas 2018 exhibition in Orlando, Florida, Safran Nacelles has signed five year agreements with Mexican airline Interjet and Icelandic carrier WOW air, to provide repair services and spares pool resources for engine nacelles on the airlines’ Airbus A320neo-series jetliners, all of which are powered by CFM International LEAP-1A turbofan engines. Safran Nacelles' repair services and spares resources are part of the company's new NacelleLife support program, launched at the show. "We're proud to extend Safran Nacelles' relationship with Interjet to the airline's A320neo-series jetliners, which will benefit from the NacelleLife coverage," said Oliver Savin, Safran Nacelles' vice president of customer support & services. "It builds on the repair and maintenance contract we signed with this dynamic Mexican airline in 2013 for the nacelles on its Sukhoi Superjet 100 fleet.” Interjet currently operates five A320neo family aircraft (three A320neo and two A321neo versions), with six additional A321neo jetliners to be received by the end of 2018.

"Safran Nacelles has provided excellent support for our Superjet 100s, and we look ahead with confidence in expanding our relationship to the A320neo - a jetliner that is vital to our airline's future," said José Luis Garza, Interjet's CEO. "Choosing the right services partners is just as important as choosing the right aircraft, and Interjet is confident we once again have made the best selection with Safran Nacelles." WOW air currently operates one A320neo and an A321neo. "As our low-fare, long-haul airline continues to grow rapidly, WOW air is counting on the high availability of its fleet – and we are looking forward to the support Safran Nacelles will provide for our A320neo family jetliners," explained Mar Thorarinsson, Technical Director at WOW air. Safran Nacelle's NacelleLife program - launched at the MRO Americas 2018 exhibition in Orlando, Florida - delivers nacelle services that can be tailored to the requirements of individual airlines and aviation lessors, involving any or all steps from preparations for a jetliner's entry into service through its retirement from operation.


Magellan Aerospace has secured a 5-year agreement with Airbus to supply wing ribs for the A330 aircraft. Magellan will manufacture ribs 2 through 5, the largest ribs in the skeletal structure of the aircraft wing.

The ribs will be produced in the United Kingdom and are expected to generate revenue over C$48 million over the term of the contract. "This new rib manufacture package complements Magellan's existing spar and rib manufacturing for the A320 and A350 programs, and demonstrates Airbus' confidence in Magellan's advanced manufacturing processes," said Phillip Underwood, Magellan's President and CEO.

Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com  37

Striving for Excellence

Aeronamic designed the APU Load Compressor and is the exclusive manufacturer and maintenance provider of this system for the US Air Force Boeing KC-46A Pegasus aerial refueling tanker.

For the F-35 Lightning II Aeronamic supplies the revolutionary APU starter/generator; an essential part of the Power & Thermal Management System.

Our business is the design, production, testing and repair & overhaul of highly complex turbo machinery, motor driven systems and critical high-precision components for the aerospace industry. Focussing on the technology development for next generation electrical machines and electronic control units we achieve low weight, low manufacturing cost and high reliability.

Planthofsweg 79, 7601 PJ Almelo, The Netherlands +31 546 545 570 - info@aeronamic.com www.aeronamic.com




eroCision, a Connecticut-based supplier of engine components and assemblies for the global aerospace industry, has been acquired by private equity firm Liberty Hall Capital Partners. AeroCision will be integrated into Bromford Industries, a supplier of engine components, fabrications and assemblies for aerospace and power generation, which was acquired by Liberty Hall in 2016. "As the industry continues to see dramatic growth in the delivery of next generation, fuel efficient engines, we believe the acquisition of AeroCision is highly strategic to Bromford and fully supports our vision of building a fully-integrated, diversified engine component supplier," said Rowan Taylor, Liberty Hall's founding Partner. "AeroCision provides Bromford with additional machining capabilities, extends Bromford's geographic presence into the US and India and increases Bromford's content on our targeted next generation engine platforms. We look forward to creating further strategic value through this exciting acquisition."

"AeroCision provides Bromford with additional machining capabilities and extends its geographic presence into the US and India”

Founded in 1958 in Chester, Connecticut, AeroCision supplies aerospace engine platforms including the Trent 1000 TEN (787), Trent XWB (A350), Trent 7000 (A330neo), LEAP (A320neo, 737MAX) and GE9X (777X). AeroCision operates a single facility in Chester, CT, as well as a joint venture in Bangalore, India. Bromford Industries is based in Birmingham, UK, with additional facilities in Alcester and Leicester. "The acquisition of AeroCision not only reinforces Bromford's existing strategic relationship with Rolls Royce,” said Bromford CEO, Gary Lowe, “but also enhances our existing strategic relationship with Safran.” AeroCision was recently named ‘Supplier of the Year’ by Rolls Royce's Aerospace Division.

GOVERNMENT OF CANADA INVESTING IN SAFETY AT LOCAL AIRPORTS The Government of Canada has announced a program to invest in safety at a number of local airports across the country. The Honourable Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport, said that Transport Canada's Airports Capital Assistance Program (ACAP) will provide over $33.2 million this year for new safety-related improvement projects at 11 airports.

Projects being supported include the rehabilitation of runways, taxiways and aprons; improvements to airfield lighting and airside electrical systems; and the purchase of snow and ice removal equipment. Among the major beneficiaries are Red Lake, Ontario; High Level, Alberta; Tofino, British Columbia; Clyde River, Nunavut and Chisasibi, Quebec.

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Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com


bae systems

aviation innovation

BAE Systems is the UK’s major defence, aerospace and security company, and the country’s largest manufacturer. Involved in some of the biggest and most technically advanced engineering and manufacturing projects in the world, the company is recognised for its relentless pursuit of innovation.

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Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com


BAE systems aviation innovation


n common with all the other ‘majors’ in the industry, BAE Systems is the result of a huge consolidation in aerospace and defence in recent times. Formed on 30 November 1999 by the merger of British Aerospace (BAe) and Marconi Electronic Systems, BAE Systems is the successor to some of the most famous British aircraft, defence electronics and warship manufacturers. Predecessors of BAE Systems built the Comet, the world’s first commercial jet airliner; the Harrier ‘jump jet’, the world’s first operational vertical/short take-off and landing (VTOL) aircraft and co-produced the iconic Concorde supersonic airliner. In the aerospace sector the company is currently involved in the design, manufacture, upgrade and support of combat and trainer aircraft for customers around the world. It also supplies electronics equipment across a range of military and commercial aircraft and is helping to develop the next-generation of unmanned air systems. BAE Systems has world leading capabilities in prime contracting, systems integration, rapid engineering, manufacturing, maintenance, repair and upgrade, as well as military training for

advanced combat and trainer aircraft. It is a global operation, with a skilled workforce of over 80,000 people in 40 countries, but it purchases many of the goods and services it needs in the domestic market, supporting significant economic activity and employment across the UK. In 2016, BAE Systems spent £4 billion on inputs from some 8,900 suppliers in the UK, representing 79 per cent of its total procurement.

Eurofighter Typhoon

Major defence projects are rarely undertaken by a single entity (or even country) these days. As Europe’s largest collaborative defence programme, the Eurofighter Typhoon is an example of what can be achieved through a global partnership of allies, in this case Italy, Germany, Spain and the United Kingdom, through a consortium consisting of Leonardo, Airbus Defence and Space and BAE Systems. Each member has a production line for the assembly of its own national aircraft, but also specialises in the production of specific parts for the whole programme. Leonardo builds the left wing, outboard flaperons and rear fuselage sections, Premium AEROTEC builds the main centre fuselage, EADS CASA the right

wing and leading edge slats. BAE Systems takes responsibility for the front fuselage, canopy, dorsal spine, tail fin and inboard flaperons. Eurofighter Typhoon is an advanced multi-role combat aircraft. In service since 2003, more than 500 Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft have since been delivered to seven countries: Germany, United Kingdom, Italy, Spain, Austria, Oman and Saudi Arabia; and ordered by two more: Kuwait and Qatar. In December last year, BAE Systems and the Government of the State of Qatar entered into a £5 billion contract for the supply of 24 Typhoon aircraft to the Qatar Emiri Air Force, along with a bespoke support and training package. Delivery is expected to commence in late 2022. BAE Systems is the prime contractor for both the provision of the aircraft and the agreed arrangements for the in-service support and initial training. BAE Systems and its partner companies continue to upgrade the capabilities of Eurofighter Typhoon through a series of phased enhancements, ensuring the aircraft evolves to meet operational demand. Delivered in 2014, the Phase 1 Enhancement (P1E) package saw the

Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com  43

platform become a high-end multi-role weapon system, with air-to-air capability including ASRAAM (Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missile) and AMRAAM (Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile) and the integration of Paveway IV for precision air-tosurface operations. Phase 2 Enhancement (P2E) will bring a range of new, long-range capabilities, and P3E will introduce a low collateral, high precision strike capability through integration of the Brimstone air-tosurface weapon, giving a precision effect with low collateral damage against fastmoving armoured targets. In August 2016 BAE Systems commenced a 10 year partnership agreement with the UK Ministry of Defence to transform support of the UK Typhoon fleet. The Typhoon Total Availability eNterprise (TyTAN) arrangement introduced new ways of working to further reduce the costs of operating the fleet at RAF Coningsby and RAF Lossiemouth by more than a third. The arrangements will enable an estimated £500 million of savings to be reinvested to develop new capability enhancements for the aircraft.


F-35 is the world’s largest defence programme. Led by the US, with participation from the UK, Italy, Netherlands, Australia, Canada, Denmark, Norway and Turkey, it is a truly collaborative programme aimed at delivering a stealthy, multi-role attack aircraft capable of operating from land and sea. BAE Systems brings its military aircraft expertise to the development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of the F-35 along with its partners Lockheed Martin, the programme’s prime contractor, and Northrop Grumman. The programme will deliver three variants of the aircraft, the conventional take off and landing (CTOL), the carrier variant (CV) and the short take off and vertical landing (STOVL), to meet customers’ individual needs. BAE Systems holds a 13-15% work share of each aircraft, excluding propulsion, bringing decades of experience in short take-off and vertical landing from its Harrier aircraft. It is also the lead design authority on crucial capabilities including the fuel system, crew escape and life support system, and the company conducts durability testing at its unique structural testing facility

Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com


BAE systems aviation innovation in East Yorkshire, while its engineering teams work alongside its partners on flight testing and weapons integration work for the UK. When it reaches peak production, the programme will be worth some £1 billion to UK industry alone, with an estimated 25,000 UK jobs sustained across more than 500 companies in the supply chain. The aft fuselage and vertical and horizontal tails - effectively the rear section - of every F-35 are built at BAE Systems’ state of the art advanced manufacturing and assembly facilities in Lancashire, UK, and Adelaide, Australia. These facilities use purpose-built robotic technology to manufacture the component parts from both titanium and aluminium, with the majority delivered from the UK and the vertical tail sections for the F-35 CTOL variants produced in Australia. Over recent years, BAE Systems has invested over £150 million in new facilities and equipment to ensure it can meet the demands of the F35 programme. The integrated assembly line, or ‘Pulse line’ as it’s often referred to, has undergone a gradual expansion to gear up for the demanding rates of the programme. In November last year, a full scale durability test airframe of the F-35A aircraft successfully completed its third life testing, equivalent to 24,000 hours of ‘flying’, in a unique testing facility at BAE Systems’ site in Brough, East Yorkshire. The airframe, known as AJ-1, is representative of the F-35A conventional take-off and landing (CTOL) variant of the jet. This test rig is the only one of its kind in the United Kingdom and has supported the testing of AJ-1 since it arrived in Brough in 2009. It is fitted with more than 20 miles of wiring, 2,500 strain gauges and 160 loading actuators which are attached to the airframe during testing. The role of BAE Systems does not stop at the airframe, however, as it also delivers key systems and electronics onboard the jets. BAE Systems is a world leader in electronic warfare capability and its engineers in New Hampshire and Texas in the US provide the electronic warfare suite for the F-35, which includes fully integrated radar warning,

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“BAE Systems brings its military aircraft expertise to the development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of the F-35 along with its partners Lockheed Martin, the programme’s prime contractor, and Northrop Grumman”

Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com


BAE systems aviation innovation

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targeting support and self-protection, to detect and defeat surface and airborne threats. To date, only around five per cent of the anticipated F-35 fleet is currently in service, but as the fleet grows, so will the need for spares and repairs, technical support and training. BAE Systems is part of the emerging global sustainment network being set up to support the growing F-35 fleet. The UK will be a significant repair hub for maintenance, repair, overhaul & upgrade (MRO&U) services for F-35 avionics and aircraft components. It will carry out this work as part of a team alongside the Defence Electronics and Components Agency and Northrop Grumman, operating out of the DECA site at RAF Sealand from 2018. BAE Systems is also part of a programme which will deliver engineering and training facilities at RAF Marham in Norfolk in preparation for the arrival of the RAF’s F-35 Lightning II fleet in 2018.

The BAE Systems team in Australia will be responsible for airframe MRO&U of the F-35 fleet in the Southern Pacific region. Forming an important part of the global sustainment capability for the fleet, its depot in Williamtown, New South Wales, will support all F-35 aircraft operating in the region from 2018. Like the UK, Australia will be a significant repair hub for MRO&U services for F-35 avionics and aircraft components, acting as lead provider of these services alongside its industry partners.

Tornado GR4

Tornado has been a vital part of air forces from the day it went into service nearly 40 years ago, and has thrived and survived through a combination of upgrade packages and capability improvements. The aircraft was conceived in the late 1960s, flew for the first time in 1974 and entered service in 1979. Built by Panavia Aircraft GmbH, a consortium between the UK, Germany

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and Italy, the Tornado is a formidable aircraft that is renowned for its ability to operate in any weather conditions, at low level, and at any time of the day or night. When the initial agreement was set up, the companies involved were the British Aircraft Corporation (which later became British Aerospace and is now BAE Systems), MBB in Germany (now part of Airbus SE) and Aeritalia (now part of Leonardo) in Italy. With a maximum speed of 1.3 Mach and an expansive range of integrated weaponry including Paveway IV, Tornado is still a frontline aircraft. As well as being in service for the three partner nations who developed Tornado, it is also in use by the Royal Saudi Air Force. The latest incarnation, Tornado GR4, is a highly capable frontline aircraft, iconic for its impressive swing role capabilities. In 2014, BAE Systems signed a £125 million extension to its contract with the Ministry of Defence to maintain Britain’s fleet of Tornados until they are

BAE systems aviation innovation retired in 2019. Following the withdrawal of the RAF’s Tornado F3 fleet from service in 2010, BAE Systems created the Reduce to Produce programme in which a team based at RAF Leeming in North Yorkshire strips down the decommissioned F3 fleet and recycles parts that can be used as spares for the GR4 fleet. The scheme was designed to help cut costs on support for the Tornado Squadrons while still maintaining a fully comprehensive spares supply chain for the aircraft. It has been a resounding success since its introduction with the teams able to recover between 800-1200 parts per airframe, creating a huge saving for the RAF.

Hawk Trainer

The BAE Systems Hawk is a singleengine, jet-powered advanced trainer aircraft. It was first flown in 1974 as the Hawker Siddeley Hawk, and subsequently produced by its successor companies, British Aerospace and BAE Systems, respectively. With an unrivalled pedigree of delivering the pilots of the future for air forces across

the globe, Hawk is the world’s most successful military aircraft trainer - with operational capability. Outperforming and outselling other aircraft in its class, its advanced airborne simulation technology and new generation cockpit environment provides a smoother and more cost effective transition to the front line, allowing for student pilot and weapons system officer output at the most appropriate skill levels in readiness for front line operations. The most famous users of the Hawk are the Red Arrows aerobatic team, who adopted the plane in 1979. The Hawk has seen many variants since then, but in May 2015, Indian aerospace manufacturer Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), which was already building Hawks under licence, announced an interest in carrying out its own Hawk upgrades, including armed light attack variants. The latest concept, an Advanced Hawk, is now being developed by a joint venture of BAE Systems and Hindustan Aeronautics. A single example of the aircraft was unveiled at Aero India 2017 and flew for the first time in June 2017 at

BAE Systems military facility in Warton, Lancashire. Equipped with a new type of pilot display, a redesigned wing and defensive aids, the Advanced Hawk will meet market requirements for the next generation of fast jet training aircraft. While the existing Hawk continues to be the world’s most successful jet trainer, the Advanced Hawk concept demonstrator builds on these proven successes. The concept demonstrator features an upgraded cockpit equipped with BAE Systems’ LiteHUD® (a lowprofile head-up display) and a new, large area display that introduces a new student/pilot training experience. It also features a redesigned wing that increases performance in areas such as turn rates, angles of attack and both take-off and landing. “The successful first flight of the Advanced Hawk concept demonstrator is the latest step in the aircraft’s development and marks a significant milestone in Hawk’s capability upgrade,” said Steve Timms, Managing Director Defence Information, Training & Services at BAE Systems. “We already have the world’s leading advanced jet trainer and the new features in

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“The most famous users of the Hawk are the Red Arrows aerobatic team, who adopted the plane in 1979”

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BAE systems aviation innovation

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Advanced Hawk have been developed after listening to our customers’ views on where fast jet pilot training will go in the future and how we ensure the Hawk continues to meet their requirements. “By using this demonstrator aircraft we have highlighted to existing users of Hawk that many of the proposed features of an Advanced Hawk, such as the large area display and new wing, could be achievable as upgrades.”


Named after the Celtic god of thunder, Taranis is an advanced technology unmanned combat aircraft system. The Taranis demonstrator is the result of one-and-a-half-million man hours of work by the UK’s leading scientists, aerodynamicists and systems engineers from 250 UK companies. The aircraft was designed to demonstrate the UK’s ability to create an unmanned air system which, under the control of a human operator, is capable of undertaking sustained surveillance, marking targets, gathering intelligence, deterring adversaries and carrying out strikes in hostile territory. The findings from the aircraft’s test flights show that the UK has developed a significant lead in understanding unmanned aircraft which could strike with precision over a long range whilst remaining undetected. The technological advances made through Taranis will also help the UK MOD and Royal Air Force make decisions on the future mix of manned and unmanned

fast jet aircraft and how they will operate together in a safe and effective manner for the UK’s defences. Costing £185 million and funded jointly by the UK MOD and UK industry, the Taranis demonstrator aircraft was formally unveiled in July 2010. Initial ‘power-up’ or ground testing commenced later in 2010 at BAE Systems’ military aircraft factory in Warton, Lancashire. Taranis has now undergone a series of successful flight trials and the team continues to develop the aircraft’s capability. About the size of a BAE Systems Hawk aircraft, Taranis has been designed and built by BAE Systems, Rolls-Royce, the Systems division of GE Aviation (formerly Smiths Aerospace) and QinetiQ, working alongside UK MOD military staff and scientists. In addition to prime contracting the project, BAE Systems led on many elements of the Taranis technology demonstrator, including the low observability, systems integration, control infrastructure and full autonomy elements (in partnership with QinetiQ). In addition to the existing industry partners, the project also works with a significant number of other UK suppliers who provide supporting technology and components.

Adaptable UAVs

Within the next few decades, armed forces could be using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) with adaptable aircraft technologies that alternate between

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fixed-wing flight and rotary-wing flight. Engineers from BAE Systems together with students from Cranfield University, have revealed a new technology concept – named Adaptable UAVs – which can alternate between the two different flight modes in the same mission. When in rotary wing mode the UAVs can be launched and recovered from battlefields and docked on a special pole. The Adaptable UAVs are a hybrid between fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft, and would use adaptive flight control and advanced navigation and guidance software, which would allow the aircraft to benefit from the greater speed and range afforded to fixed-wing aircraft, before alternating to rotary-wing mode to hover and achieve vertical take-off and landing. The pole constrains the lateral or sideways movement of the UAV when being launched or recovered so strong winds cannot dislodge them. This is particularly important when recovering a UAV to the aft of a ship or a land vehicle. The pole’s gyro-stabilised element also ensures that it remains upright independently of the host vehicle’s orientation, which may be rolling if on a ship, or in the case of a land vehicle driving up or down a slope at the time of the launch or recovery. “The battlefield of the future will require novel solutions to meet emerging threats and to keep human operators safe wherever they may be,” said Professor Nick Colosimo, BAE Systems’ futurist and technologist. “The Adaptable UAVs concept and related

BAE systems aviation innovation technologies are one of a number of concepts being explored through close collaboration between industry and students in academia.” Cranfield University is one of BAE Systems strategic university partners. Research staff and students have explored a range of UAV technologies including research into adaptive flight control and advanced navigation and guidance software. “Working with BAE Systems on the Cranfield University MSc in Autonomous Vehicle Dynamics & Control has provided a great opportunity for the students and research staff to explore a range of novel concepts and technologies,” said Professor Antonios Tsourdos, head of the Centre for Autonomous and CyberPhysical Systems at Cranfield University.


BAE Systems has developed some of the world’s most innovative technologies and continues to invest in research and development to generate future products and capabilities. Another of its university partners is The University of Manchester with whom it is exploring some unique flight control technology.

MAGMA is a small scale unmanned aerial vehicle which will use a unique blown-air system to manoeuvre the aircraft - paving the way for future stealthier aircraft designs. The first phase of flight trials has been successfully completed. The new concept for aircraft control removes the conventional need for complex, mechanical moving parts to move flaps to control the aircraft during flight. This could give greater control as well as reduce weight and maintenance costs, allowing for lighter, stealthier, faster and more efficient military and civil aircraft in the future. The two technologies to be trialled first using the jet-powered UAV, MAGMA, are: • Wing circulation control, which takes air from the aircraft engine and blows it supersonically through the trailing edge of the wing to provide control for the aircraft. • Fluidic thrust vectoring, which uses blown air to deflect the exhaust, allowing for the direction of the aircraft to be changed. The flight trials are part of an ongoing project between the two organisations and wider long-term collaboration

between industry, academia and government to explore and develop innovative flight control technology. Further flight trials are planned for the coming months to demonstrate the novel flight control technologies with the ultimate aim of flying the aircraft without any moving control surfaces or fins. If successful, the tests will demonstrate the first ever use of such circulation control in flight on a gas turbine aircraft. “The technologies we are developing with The University of Manchester will make it possible to design cheaper, higher performance, next generation aircraft,” said Clyde Warsop, engineering fellow at BAE Systems. “Our investment in research and development drives continued technological improvements in our advanced military aircraft, helping to ensure UK aerospace remains at the forefront of the industry and that we retain the right skills to design and build the aircraft of the future.”

Cyber defence

Another recent initiative is the development of cyber defence capabilities to help aircraft detect and mitigate cyber attacks in real time. The new capabilities — including system

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BAE systems aviation innovation

analysis, reverse engineering, and intrusion detection — will build upon the company’s state-of-the-art threat management solutions and help protect war fighters and aircraft from a variety of cyber threats. While future platforms are designed with cyber security in mind, this was not always the case with the current fleet of military aircraft, which may be vulnerable to cyber attacks. These platforms were developed to be in service for decades and need periodic upgrades. They are complex systems packed with processors, computers,

networks and data links, creating an interconnected digital environment that may expose war fighters to cyber threats. These cyber defence capabilities expand the company’s threat management portfolio, including the recently announced 3-Dimensional Advanced Warning System (3DAWS) product suite, which is designed to protect aircraft from firstencounter kinetic threats with layered countermeasures. Innovation is a key focus at BAE Systems, as witnessed by an R&D spend of £1 billion in 2016 and £4.4

billion in the past five years. Whether in collaboration with world class partners from allied countries, building aircraft and systems for our mutual defence, or researching with leading UK universities in areas such as UAVs, novel materials, advanced manufacturing or artificial intelligence, BAE Systems is firmly at the centre of aviation innovation.

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With its continual quest for innovation and its relentless rivalry with Boeing, Airbus always has an eye for an opportunity. The announcement of a partnership with Bombardier surprised a few of us, but it’s good for the headlines...


hen Boeing complained to the US International Trade Commission that Bombardier was being subsidised by the Canadian and UK governments and the Province of Quebec, to sell its C-Series planes to Delta Airlines below cost price, many observers thought it was a little out of proportion. What were they thinking of? Boeing doesn’t make an aircraft that competes with the C-Series. How could Boeing complain about government support for Bombardier when it gets massive support from the US military, NASA and the State of Washington?

Boeing said in a statement that the dispute “has everything to do with maintaining a level playing field and ensuring that aerospace companies abide by trade agreements.” Others thought it smacked of corporate bullying. Goliath picking on poor little David. Bombardier claimed that Boeing was trying to strangle a new competitor at birth and The Economist called the case against Bombardier "a flight of hypocrisy". When the US Commerce Department imposed swingeing duties amounting to 300 per cent on the C-Series, there was a sharp intake of breath across the industry.

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“In October it was announced that Airbus had agreed to purchase a 50.01% stake in the C-Series Aircraft Limited Partnership (CSALP), the entity that manufactures and sells the C-Series”

AIRBUS How could Bombardier survive? Then David looked around for a stone – and Airbus obliged. In October it was announced that Airbus had agreed to purchase a 50.01% stake in the C-Series Aircraft Limited Partnership (CSALP), the entity that manufactures and sells the C-Series. Airbus will provide procurement, sales and marketing, and customer support expertise for the programme, and crucially, will also create a second C-Series assembly line at its A320 assembly facility in Mobile, Alabama. The deal also contains a provision which allows Airbus to eventually buy out the remaining stake held by both Bombardier (31%) and Investissement Québec (19%). Both Airbus and Bombardier deny (of course) that the dispute with Boeing is the reason for the deal, and it is true that Airbus is no stranger to the strategic partnership; talk of a link between the two has been in the wind for a while. But it is also crucial for sales of the C-Series in the US to avoid the huge tariffs imposed by US authorities. That might just be achieved if the assembly of C-Series aircraft for the US market could be carried out in the Airbus facility in Mobile, Alabama. Having said that, the deal has merit for a number of other reasons. The single aisle market is growing, representing arguably 70% of the expected global future demand for aircraft. The C-Series range (from 100 to 150 seats) is highly complementary to Airbus’ existing single aisle aircraft


portfolio, which focuses on the higher end of the single-aisle business (150240 seats). Furthermore, the world class sales, marketing and support networks that Airbus brings into the venture are expected to strengthen and accelerate the C-Series’ commercial momentum, and Airbus’ supply chain expertise could generate significant production cost savings. "This is a win-win for everybody!” said Airbus chief executive officer Tom Enders. “The C-Series, with its stateof-the-art design and great economics, is a great fit with our existing singleaisle aircraft family and rapidly extends our product offering into a fast growing market sector. I have no doubt

that our partnership with Bombardier will boost sales and the value of this programme tremendously. "Not only will this partnership secure the C-Series and its industrial operations in Canada, the UK and China, but we also bring new jobs to the US. Airbus will benefit from strengthening its product portfolio in the high-volume single-aisle market, offering superior value to our airline customers worldwide." The transaction has been approved by the boards of directors of both Airbus and Bombardier, as well as the Government of Québec. It remains subject to regulatory approvals, but completion is currently expected for the second half of 2018.

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Identifying global sourcing as one of its leading long-term objectives, Airbus aims to source 40% of its supplies outside Western Europe by 2020, and has formed an integrated Airbus Global Sourcing Network to promote the globalisation of its sourcing footprint. At the last count, it was reckoned that around 46,500 suppliers from more than 100 countries deliver parts, components or sub-systems to Airbus. In the past few years, the supply chain has become concentrated and more international, as a result of consolidation within Europe's aerospace and defence sector, and major new aircraft programmes placing larger work packages with a smaller number of lead suppliers. A long-haul aircraft comprises around 4 million individual parts, of which 70– 80 per cent are provided by external suppliers. The material requirements and ordering processes are equally complex, and need to be closely coordinated. Airbus has developed the online sourcing tool ePROC to enhance collaboration

between buyers and suppliers. This is a shared single strategic space for buyers and suppliers across all Airbus divisions to perform all aspects of calls for tender, from the identification of potential suppliers to the selection of successful parties. The tool also allows buyers and suppliers to exchange requirements and proposals online during the bid process. In 2013, SupplyOn, a global provider of web-based solutions for supply chain management (SCM) in the manufacturing industry, completed the integration of around 600 suppliers with its AirSupply solution, which provides support for the collaborative supply chain management processes between customers and suppliers typically found in the aerospace industry. The solution supports foresighted capacity planning, interactive fine tuning of delivery quantities and delivery dates, order and delivery status tracking, as well as the consumption-controlled logistics concept vendor managed inventory. The shared AirSupply industry platform optimizes not only the

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working relationship between the manufacturer and suppliers but also communication with suppliers in the downstream supply chain. The resulting end-to-end data flow over several levels of the supply chain creates more stable supply chains by permitting early identification of and reaction to impending shortages. As the performance of suppliers is key for the success of everyone involved, Airbus is continuously developing its supplier base, focusing on partnerships with the best suppliers in terms of quality, time and cost. Suppliers for direct procurement can be grouped into three commodity clusters: systems & equipment, aerostructures and material. Each division has its own procurement function in charge of direct procurement. Indirect procurement of goods and services, ranging from buildings to machines and tools, engineering services, consulting, IT and office equipment, is under the responsibility of the shared service unit Airbus General Procurement (GP).


“At the last count, it was reckoned that around 46,500 suppliers from more than 100 countries deliver parts, components or sub-systems to Airbus”

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A380 cockpit

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Global production

As well as the external supply chain, every Airbus jetliner is the product of highly efficient cooperation across the company’s own global manufacturing chain, too. Airbus employs a network of regional facilities for design, engineering and manufacture throughout Europe and North America, with additional sites in India and China. At Airbus sites around the world, the application of lean manufacturing – which focuses on achieving the highest throughput with the least inventory – has shortened leadtimes and improved the efficiency of products and processes. On a larger scale, this approach has also led to standardization of parts and components. In the early years, primary production responsibilities for the A300 were distributed throughout Europe based on capabilities within the Airbus network. France’s expertise in systems integration, instrumentation and human-machine interface resulted in the country’s

responsibility for the forward fuselage, cockpit and flight control systems, and it also produced the lower centre fuselage section. The British were well-known for their capabilities in wing design, and were therefore given duties for the new jetliner’s wings. Germany’s strength in manufacturing and processes resulted in the company’s assignment to build the forward and rear fuselage ‘barrel’ sections, along with the upper portion of the centre fuselage, while Spain was chosen for the horizontal tailplane. The emphasis on cooperation continued with each Airbus jetliner programme that followed, from the best-selling A320 Family to the company’s 21st century flagship A380 and the next-generation A350 XWB. Throughout the product line’s development, responsibilities within Airbus’ own production network have evolved to reflect the evolution of technology and materials, manufacturing processes and the expertise of each Airbus-operated facility.

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“At Airbus sites around the world, the application of lean manufacturing has shortened lead-times and improved the efficiency of products and processes”

AIRBUS UP FOR THE CHALLENGE The newest Airbus final assembly line, in Toulouse, France, builds the A350 XWB. Conceived with ecoefficiency in mind, this 74,000-square metre factory houses the initial stages of final assembly for the A350 XWB, involving the join-up of fuselage and wings. A streamlined aircraft assembly process for the A350 allows teams to work in parallel, reducing the time from start of final assembly to aircraft delivery by 30 per cent. Toulouse is also the home to Airbus’ A380 assembly line – a massive 490 metre-long by 250-metre facility that provides 150,000 square metres of assembly area for the flagship doubledeck jetliner. Also in France, the Saint-Nazaire plant specialises in structural assembly, equipping and testing of front and central fuselage sections for the entire Airbus family. It receives sub-assemblies to be fitted for the forward fuselage for the A320 family, the forward and central fuselage for the A330 and A380 families, and the nose fuselage for the A350 XWB. Saint-Nazaire is also in charge of equipping and testing these sections before delivering them to various final assembly lines.

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Another French facility in Nantes specialises in the manufacture and assembly of the centre wing boxes for all Airbus aircraft, and is a leader in the manufacture of carbon fibre reinforced plastic structural parts – such as the A350 XWB keel beam. Nantes is also responsible for manufacturing the radomes for the entire Airbus family, the ailerons for the A330 and A380 families and air inlets for the A350 XWB, A380 families and A320neo. In the UK, the Filton site near Bristol is responsible for wing design, landing gear and fuel systems design and testing, as well as manufacturing of components. Located in North Wales, the Airbus site in Broughton assembles wings for the entire family of commercial aircraft, producing

over 1,000 wings per year. Its activities include wing skin milling, stringer manufacture, full wing equipping and wing box assembly. The company’s Bremen site in Germany is responsible for design and manufacture of high-lift systems for the wings on all Airbus aircraft. Wings for the A330 and A350 XWB are delivered to Bremen from the plant in Broughton in the UK. Also in Germany, Airbus’ Hamburg site manages structural assembly and outfitting of fuselage sections, as well as final assembly for A320 family aircraft. This plant is also home to Airbus' A380 major component assembly hall – which houses the structural assembly, equipping of the forward and complete rear fuselage sections, along with cabin

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furnishing, painting and delivery to customers in Europe and the Middle East. In addition, the Hamburg plant manufactures and equips the rear fuselage sections for Airbus’ A330 and A350 XWB programmes. The vertical tail planes of all Airbus aircraft are produced at Stade in Germany. The site also makes other carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP) components –For the A350 XWB, this site produces the upper wing shell, along with the jetliner’s vertical tail plane and CFRP fuselage shells. All the electronic communications and cabin management systems needed by both crew and passengers are designed and produced at the Buxtehude site in Germany. They include the cabin intercommunication data system used to control cabin

AIRBUS UP FOR THE CHALLENGE “Located in North Wales, the Airbus site in Broughton assembles wings for the entire family of commercial aircraft, producing over 1,000 wings per year”

functions, and the passenger service units for passenger seating system controls. Getafe, in central Spain, specialises in aeronautical component engineering, design, production and assembly. The plant is the delivery centre for final assembly lines in Toulouse and Hamburg for all programmes with the exception of the A380 – a role it shares with the Puerto Real plant in Cádiz. Getafe uses metallic material and advanced composite materials to manufacture the fuselage for all Airbus aircraft and specialises in the final assembly and testing of all horizontal tail planes; rear fuselage and tail cone of the A380 and rear fuselage of the A350 XWB. Getafe is also responsible for the A380’s main landing gear doors. Airbus’ Illescas site manufactures composite aeronautical components, including stabilisers, rudders and spars, sections of rear fuselage and landing gear components for the A380, sections of the rear fuselage and internal skin of the wing for the Airbus A350 XWB. Located in the south of Spain, Puerto Real specialises in automated assembly of movable surfaces (rudders and spars) for all Airbus jetliner programmes. It is also responsible for final equipment and delivery to the final assembly line of large, complex structural components – such as the horizontal tail plane and belly fairing of the A380 fuselage, and produces the horizontal tail plane boxes of the A350 XWB.

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R O F G N I K O e u O L a uniq R E N T R A P From the Airbus-Bombardier advanced CS-300 airliner to the A320-A330-A340-A350 and A380 airbus family YOU CAN TRUST OUR SISTER COMPANIES AEROSPACE










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The maiden flight of the Airbus A3501000, the longer-fuselage version of the A350 XWB, took place in November 2016 from Toulouse-Blagnac Airport in southwest France. Major structural sub-assemblies are brought to The Roger Béteille A350 XWB final assembly line from other plants in France, Spain, Germany and the UK, which specialise in their particular piece of the structure. The last 40 years have seen continual growth of the Airbus family and a new era of airline travel started in 2007 when the 600-plus-seat A380 began commercial operation. The double-deck A380 is the largest commercial aircraft flying today, capable of carrying 544 passengers in a comfortable four-class configuration, and up to a staggering 853 in a singleclass configuration.

By incorporating the latest advances in structures and materials, the A380 offers the lowest cost per seat of any widebody aircraft, over 15 per cent lower than its nearest competitor. This includes the use of advanced aluminium alloys for the wing and fuselage, along with the extensive application of composite materials in the centre wing box’s primary structure, wing ribs and rear fuselage section.

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With a new wing design and composite materials accounting for 25 per cent of its structural weight, the A380 is a very efficient aircraft. By producing only about 75 grams of CO2 per passenger kilometre, the A380 contributes to the aviation industry's commitment to minimise greenhouse gas emissions.


The various structures which eventually come together to build an aircraft can start their manufacturing processes in many different parts of the world. Bringing them all together is an industry in itself – and as aircraft get larger, transporting the wings and fuselage becomes a logistical challenge. Airbus has developed its own air transportation system to carry many of the pre-assembled sections from their production locations to final assembly lines in Toulouse and Hamburg - a fleet of five A300-600ST Super Transporters. These modified A300-600s, nicknamed Beluga (after the whale), have a bulbous main-deck cargo cabin, which enables the loading of complete fuselage sections and wings. The Super Transporters have been

in operation since 1996, but in order to support increasing production rates, Airbus is refreshing the fleet with a new model, BelugaXL, with a mid-2019 service entry. Built as a replacement for the current Beluga A300-600ST, the BelugaXL is derived from the larger and more powerful A330-200, which is six metres longer, one metre wider, and boasts a payload lifting capacity that is six tonnes greater than its predecessor. Crucially, a BelugaXL will be able to carry two wings for the new widebody A350 XWB, instead of a single wing currently accommodated on the BelugaST. The first large panels for the rear section of the BelugaXL arrived at the final assembly facility in Toulouse in April this year, following a five night long road convoy from Aernnova’s

factory in Berantevilla, north eastern Spain. The delivery of the first nose section, however, from Méaulte in northern France, was appropriately performed by one of the five BelugaSTs currently in operation. Airbus continues to invest in improvements across its product line – including development of the A320neo (new engine option) version, the A330neo variant and more. The company’s international production network has also been significantly expanded over the years, highlighted by its single-aisle final assembly line in Tianjin, China, along with the Airbus US Manufacturing Facility for A320 family jetliners in Mobile, Alabama – which commenced aircraft deliveries in 2016, and is now planning an expansion to accommodate the Bombardier C-Series.

“A BelugaXL will be able to carry two wings for the new widebody A350 XWB, instead of a single wing currently accommodated on the BelugaST”

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“Airbus employs a network of regional facilities for design, engineering and manufacture throughout Europe and North America, with additional sites in India and China”

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Rotorcraft innovation

As with conventional aircraft, Airbus is committed to setting new standards in the helicopter industry, both by improving the existing range to offer safer, greener and more efficient helicopters, and by coming up with ground-breaking ideas in response to the challenges of the 21st century. One of these is Racer, a high-speed helicopter demonstrator currently being developed as part of the Clean Sky 2 research programme. Unveiled in June at the Paris air show, Racer (rapid and cost-effective rotorcraft) incorporates a host

of innovative features. It will be optimised for a cruise speed of more than 400 km/h, aiming to achieve the best trade-off between speed, cost-efficiency, sustainability and mission performance by combining fixed wings for energy efficient lift, propellers (lateral rotors) for energy-efficient propulsion and a main rotor that provides energyefficient VTOL (vertical take-off and landing) flight capabilities. The Racer demonstrator will also benefit from a hybrid metallic-composite airframe, specifically designed for low weight

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and low recurring costs. The aircraft targets missions requiring the helicopter’s unique hovering and landing capabilities but for which travel time is either of vital importance (emergency medical transport, search and rescue) or contributing highly to mission efficiency (passenger transport in the O&G industry, private and business aviation, etc). Development of the demonstrator relies on a wide European network of almost 40 industrial partners. Final assembly is expected to start in 2019, with a first flight the following year.


“Hybrid propulsion or all electric propulsion aircraft are providing the stimulus to transform how we travel”

Electric avenue

Airbus continuously invests in new technologies to make aircraft safer, more reliable, cheaper to operate, more environmentally friendly and for the passenger, provide a more convenient and enjoyable travel experience. Electrification is a major driver for the future of flight. Some of the key technologies in electric propulsion systems, such as electric machines (motors, generators), power electronics (converters, inverters, rectifiers), and battery systems, have seen their energy density, power density and recurring cost improve significantly over the past decade. The fact that electric motors are less costly and less heavy means they are potentially much easier to integrate into an aircraft, whether that is a completely new design or an older design that could now realise its potential. For instance, it is much easier to hinge an electric cable than a rigid fuel pipe — along with the fact

that from an electromagnetic point of view an electric motor doesn’t care which orientation it is in — means tilt-wing VTOL aircraft start to become more interesting. These aircraft types can have a similar take-off and landing performance to a helicopter but, because of the improved ratio between lift and drag during cruise, they can have a cruise speed and range equivalent to a fixed wing aircraft. Hybrid propulsion or all electric propulsion aircraft are providing the stimulus to transform how we travel. Airbus imagines a world where electric vehicles can lift off from the ground in a similar way to drones and transport people or goods across towns, cities and borders; where medical emergencies can have equipment and meds routed to them as the crow flies instead of around gridlocked city routes; where aircraft are in communication with each other and can choose the most efficient flight path to a disaster zone to drop

vital supplies, medics or equipment. Airbus announced $39.7 billion worth of new business during the 2017 Paris Air Show, with firm orders for 144 aircraft and MoUs for 182 others. “Our commercial success at Paris extends our already diversified order backlog to a new industry record of over 6,800 aircraft, with 326 orders worth $40 billion,” said John Leahy, Chief Operating Officer, Customers, Airbus Commercial Aircraft. Sales of the A320 Family were dominant, with 132 firm orders worth $14.7 billion, and MoUs for 174 aircraft worth $19.1 billion. In the wide body segment, Airbus won business for 20 aircraft worth $5.9 billion, comprising 12 firm orders worth $3.6 billion and MoUs for eight aircraft worth $2.3 billion. Next year is Farnborough’s turn, then Paris again in 2019. We may not see orders for electric aircraft just yet, but it will be fascinating to see how orders for the C-Series affect these figures.

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Airbus Helicopters H160

A new chapter in helicopter design Carbon fibre reinforced PEEK prepreg rotor hub developed with Airbus Helicopters. Airbus Helicopters, a division of the Airbus Group providing civil and military helicopter solutions, has developed the H160 helicopter as the first new member of the H generation of civil aircraft. First unveiled at the Heli-Expo, Florida in March 2015, the H160 is currently undergoing its flight test program, with planned service entry in 2018. The H160 is a medium duty, twin-engine helicopter, with a capacity of 12 passengers, designed for operations in sectors such as oil & gas, air ambulance and coast guard roles as well as private business aviation services. Airbus Helicopters aims to offer clients more performance, safety and comfort with the new 160 as well as improving the overall cost effectiveness and operating efficiency. One of the key factors in delivering these requirements is a significant increase in the usage of composite materials in the H160 program.

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The H160 is the first civil helicopter to use a full composite material airframe structure, providing massive weight savings as well as producing a tough and more robust aircraft. Another key component, Airbus Helicopters’ proven Spheriflex bearingless main rotor hub, has been enhanced with the introduction of a unique thermoplastic composite technology developed with Porcher Industries.

Innovative thermoplastic composite solutions

Airbus Industries had previously introduced composite materials in its main rotor hubs with the Starflex hub, which used a thermoset resin based composite in place of the traditional metallic component. With the H160 being a completely new design from nose-to-tail, every component was evaluated and the target for the new rotor hub was to reduce weight, improve long

term performance and optimize damage tolerance. A thermoplastic composite solution, and in particular a PEEK resin matrix, was selected as it provided significantly higher toughness and long term resistance to fatigue in the finished part. Another significant benefit of using a thermoplastic composite is that components can be recycled more easily at the end of their life, helping to meet environmental and sustainability targets for the program. PEEK composites also exhibit particularly high resistance to aviation fuel, hydraulic oil and other common flight service fluids, further reducing the maintenance requirements for the main rotor hub. With the engineering design completed and resin matrix selected, the next challenge for Porcher Industries was to finalize the high temperature impregnation process, to ensure precise control of the mechanical properties of the finished carbon fibre reinforced prepreg. Porcher’s cutting-edge expertise in processing specific carbon fibres, and its ability to carefully control fibre sizing, allowed it to optimize the prepreg interface bonding and mechanical performance.

Test sections and prototype parts were subjected to a detailed set of mechanical tests which lead into a very stringent program of extended fatigue testing and monitoring. Happily, the Porcher Industries carbon fibre PEEK prepreg passed with flying colours, meeting the quality requirements of this safety critical application and receiving the green light for production by Airbus Helicopters. Thanks to the success of this partnership with Airbus Helicopters, the next generation of high performance thermoplastic composite parts for structural applications in aerospace is already under development. Porcher Industries is confident that this technology will also be applicable in other market sectors such as the automotive industry, and is looking forward to further challenging thermoplastic prepreg projects in the future.


Aviation Manufacturer Magazine www.aviationmanufacturer.com  77


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