Irvine, California-based Aerospace division of Eaton Corporation arrived at Le Bourget flush with orders to provide major sub components for several of the latest generation U.S. military aircraft programs.
F-35 Lightning II
Progress in the Eurofighter Typhoon program remains slow, although steady. In recent months, single-seat production aircraft with added functionality have been delivered to all four partner air forces. Air-to-air missile firings against targets representing sophisticated threats have taken place. Flight tests of the latest flight control system software are under way.
The landing gear extension and retraction system for the Airbus A380 and the Boeing KC-767A tanker mission system are among Smiths Aerospace’s most visible contributions to this year’s Paris Air Show, but they are just the tip of a highly diversified iceberg, according to the group’s president, Dr. John Ferrie.
Here at the Paris Air Show yesterday, Stork and Northrop Grumman signed a framework contract worth $150 million for Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter airframe components. If the agreement translates into a firm order, Stork will produce 520 in-flight opening doors for all three types and 110 inner weapons bay doors for the STOVL version during the low-rate initial production phase.
GKN Aerospace has delivered the first integrated canopy to the U.S. Air Force for the Boeing F-15C fighter, the company announced. The delivery occurred six months ahead of schedule, GKN officials said, pointing out that the program has involved the management of a supplier network of more than 20 companies responsible for the manufacture of 350 detailed parts.
Technology developed by Qinetiq has allowed a Harrier jump jet to complete the world’s first automatic vertical landing on a ship. Using position data from GPS receivers aboard the airplane and the ship, the Qinetiq-developed system was able to track the precise relative position of both to allow a successful landing without intervention from the pilot.
During a presentation at Le Bourget on Tuesday, Lockheed Martin officials and a panel of both present and former customers extolled the virtues of the lightweight fighter that is still operating 32 years after it was originally designed.
U.S. firm Pratt & Whitney is at the forefront of building the international partnerships that are the foundation of the Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program. On Tuesday at Le Bourget, P&W president Louis Chênevert and Turkish undersecretary for defense industries Murad Bayar signed a letter of intent to award part of the production of the F-35’s F135 engine to Turkish aerospace companies Alp Aviation and KaleKalip.
A big part of making the JSF affordable is the production plan. Managers from BAE Systems and Northrop Grumman discussed here Monday how they have adopted ‘lean manufacturing’ processes and philosophies from the automotive industry. With the production rate planned to reach one per working day (e.g., about 260 per year) in 2012, there is plenty of scope for adopting the techniques of mass production.
A new set of technology-sharing memoranda of understanding are to be negotiated between the U.S. government and the eight partner nations in the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program, Aviation International News has learned.