J.R. “Rick” Hundley has been named president and CEO of San Antonio-based M7 Aerospace, succeeding Ron Frederick, who is retiring in December. Hundley previously was a senior executive at consulting firm Business Strategies International, aerospace manufacturing and service organization Safran USA, Lockheed Martin and General Dynamics.
French utility aircraft builder Reims Aviation went into bankruptcy protection on October 30. A company statement said the move was forced by a cash-flow crisis rather than a lack of orders.
Gulfstream’s new G650 ultra-long-range jet will feature a wing built by Spirit AeroSystems. Gulfstream awarded a contract worth more than $1 billion to Spirit to design, produce and integrate the flight-ready G650 wing. The G650 will be the fastest civil airplane, with a maximum operating speed of Mach 0.925, and will offer 7,000-nm range at Mach 0.85 and 5,000 nm at Mach 0.90.
British defense and security technology company Qinetiq is poised to complete the acquisition of Australian engineering group AeroStructures. The would-be subsidiary conducts engineering analysis and assessment of aircraft for structural integrity management and airframe life extension. It also carries out nondestructive testing, provides design and inspection services and trains aircraft engineers.
Sino Swearingen, developer of the SJ30-2 business jet, and Spain’s Gamesa Aeronautica are suing each other over an alleged breach of contract. As previously reported, Sino Swearingen selected Aerostructures in Nashville, Tenn., to replace Gamesa as the supplier of SJ30-2 fuselage sections, blaming Gamesa for contributing to the airplane’s development delays by providing components that did not meet quality standards.
Reims Aviation, one of Europe’s few remaining independent light aircraft manufacturers and subcontractors, has been saved from bankruptcy. The Reims, eastern France commercial court lifted the bankruptcy protection order on the company but said it should be broken up and sold in two parts, with 164 of the 461 employees losing their jobs.
The future of both the aero-structures and structural engine component businesses belongs to an elite group of so-called Super Tier 1 suppliers/strategic partners.
Spirit AeroSystems of Wichita, Kansas, and Infosys have agreed to jointly establish a new engineering center at the Infosys campus in Bangalore, India. According to Spirit (Stand A1000), the center will concentrate on high-end engineering services including product development, design and analysis of airframe structures, engineering change management and stress engineering support.
Spirit AeroSystems in Wichita last month announced it is acquiring BAE Systems’ aerostructures division. To be known as Spirit AeroSystems Europe, the enterprise will produce structural components for Airbus and Boeing airliners, as well as for the Raytheon Hawker 800XP.
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