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Aerothermal Group and AIC Group have successfully completed the move of an 18ft diameter autoclave from Scunthorpe, UK, to UTC Aerospace’s Prestwick facility, also in the UK.
According to AIC, the autoclave was so large that the move required the Highways Agency to make special arrangements for the transfer.
This is a major milestone in the contract to provide UTC with a custom-built state-of-the-art autoclave, won by Poole-based companies, AIC Group and Aerothermal Group. AIC claims that the autoclave is the first of its size in the UK and says that it will enable UTC Aerospace Systems’ Prestwick facility to maintain, repair and overhaul larger nacelles systems fitted to the next generation of wide-bodied aircraft.
The autoclave is expected to be operational by the end of 2015 and it will run on AIC’s Autoclave Management and Control System (AMCS) which AIC explains provides significant production efficiencies and energy savings as well as aerospace compliant QA reports. The autoclave will be maintained by AIC in a 10-year programme which includes their world class 24/7 technical support.
Ian Toll, Founding Director of Aerothermal Group, said, “We have achieved a major milestone in this project and it was fantastic to see the autoclave begin its installation in UTC. We are still firmly on track to see the autoclave operational in the coming months.”
Nigel Clifford, Sales Director of AIC Group, said, “Manufacturing an autoclave requires complex engineering design skills. And moving one of 18ft diameter was also a challenge. However we have overcome these challenges and are confident that the autoclave will soon be working efficiently on large engine nacelles.”
Steve Callan, Managing Director of UTC Aerospace Systems – Aerostructures Prestwick Service Centre, said, “We are committed to maintaining the high quality capabilities and services our customers expect. This new autoclave better positions us to be a leader in the new large engine nacelle products that have begun entering the market. It further demonstrates our dedication to meeting our customers’ requirements and supporting them into the future.”
Photo provided by AIC.
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