Spirit AeroSystems [NYSE: SPR] has announced it has leveraged advanced composite technology from its Research and Development portfolio to introduce new work at the company´s UK facility, the company said.
Scotland´s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon visited Spirit´s site in Prestwick, Ayrshire, to share details of the new single-aisle spoiler work on the Airbus A320 family programs.
The Spirit-developed Resin Transfer Molding (RTM) solution supports the high-volume production of spoilers and other monolithic components and promises to deliver improved quality and significant cost savings. Spirit will establish a world-class manufacturing platform involving state-of-the-art automation and robotics to meet its customer´s rate demands, which are currently at over 600 spoilers per month. The Scottish Government is providing investment support to secure the project, which will result in an increase in headcount at the facility.
The RTM design solution utilizes an innovative fabrication process, enabled by material selection, that is custom designed to meet the increasingly complex geometries required for advanced composite structures. The process greatly increases design certainty and structural integrity throughout the completed component.
This, in combination with a fully defined manufacturing process and industrialization strategy, presents an alternative solution to the current composite sandwich structure. Spirit and Airbus have been collaborating on the research and development of the new technology since 2014. The Aerospace Technology Institute, a UK government aerospace research and development institute, also provided a funding match to the effort.
Spirit AeroSystems designs and builds aerostructures for both commercial and defense customers. With headquarters in Wichita, Kansas, Spirit operates sites in the US, UK, France and Malaysia. The company´s core products include fuselages, pylons, nacelles and wing components for the world´s premier aircraft. Spirit AeroSystems focuses on affordable, innovative composite and aluminum manufacturing solutions to support customers around the globe. More information is available at www.spiritaero.com.