ST Aerospace Opens Texas Cabin Completion Center

 - March 3, 2014, 4:00 AM

Aeria Luxury Interiors, the private jet business that ST Aerospace launched at the Singapore Airshow two years ago, is up and running in San Antonio, Texas, and has secured its first order for full completion of a green aircraft.

Since it was launched in February 2012, Aeria has become an approved Boeing Business Jets completion center and has performed maintenance or partial refurbishment on three BBJs. It also performed heavy maintenance, a complete refurbishment and an extensive IFE upgrade on a Boeing 767.

At last month’s Singapore Airshow, Aeria announced its first order for the full completion of a green aircraft–a BBJ for an undisclosed customer in Europe who had already commissioned a new interior from Aeria for another aircraft.

The BBJ will be outfitted with a dedicated forward crew area, galley for fresh meal preparation, dining suite, conference room, rest lounge and master suite. High-definition screens will be installed, along with Inmarsat and Iridium satcom and Wi-Fi. The aircraft is due to enter the completion process in December, for final delivery in October next year.

“We are also in negotiations for the completion of a widebody Boeing,” Ron Soret, STA San Antonio’s general manager of completions and head of Aeria, told AIN.

The Aeria facility is now undergoing a 14,000-sq-ft expansion to accommodate a cabinet and upholstery shop (bringing those activities in-house this year or next) and a new standalone building that will house the design, sales and marketing teams.

Aeria employs 35 people for private aircraft completions, a number that will increase this year to fulfill the new contracts.

Also to be added this year is a 3-D printer that will be used for sales and marketing, as well as prototyping and limited production of nonstructural parts. “If a customer wants to see a seat or a side ledge, for example, he will be able to hold a scale model in his hands,” Soret said. said he further noted that “3-D-printed” production items would pass burn tests.