Spirit AeroSystems develops sustainable composite wing manufacturing technologies

The work was carried out by Spirit Shadow Works European division in its Composite Development Centre in Prestwick, Scotland.

The out of autoclave fabrication process will produce high tolerance composite integrated parts such as primary wing skins and spars with less energy input, lower capital investment and lower recurring part production costs.

"This is a crucial milestone in our quest to deliver to our OEM customers a composite production system capable of coping with next generation aerostructures' high production rates with more balanced and sustainable technology," says Marcello Grassi, Head of Technology, Spirit AeroSystems Europe.

During the last four years Spirit has been collaborating with its customer on a number of government supported R&D programmes such as Next Generation Composite Wing (NGCW), I-Composites Grand Challenge and Rapid Technology Evolution (RATE). At the Farnborough 2012 Air Show Spirit displayed its composite integrated wing cover demonstrator, with its associated Spirit proprietary technology portfolio, which represents initial efforts aimed at developing high value and sustainable manufacturing technologies for next generation short range aircraft.

"We operate in a highly competitive market," comments Neil McManus, VP and Managing Director Spirit AeroSystems Europe.

"By developing design and manufacturing technologies capable of reducing factory footprint, capital equipment costs, as well as production costs by way of integrating technologies into a smart product solution gives us a tremendous platform upon which we can execute our mission and achieve our objectives to be the design build partner of choice."