Cobham Opens High-Tech Composite Manufacturing Facility

07 May 2010

Joined by political and industry dignitaries, Cobham has formally opened its new state-of-the-art, ‘green building’ certified composites manufacturing facility with a ribbon cutting ceremony.

The 73,500-sq. ft. facility will enable high-volume production of advanced composite products for the aerospace and defence industries. Industry and state leaders expect that 200 new jobs will be created in the first five years of operation. Cobham has invested over $5 million in just over four months to acquire and build the critical infrastructure necessary to establish this facility, located in Suffolk, Va.

Cobham built the facility in accordance with the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED green building certification system, which provides third-party verification that the facility was designed and built using strategies aimed at improving performance in energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, and stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their affects.

“We hope this facility sets an example for manufacturers across all sectors that a company can produce the most advanced products in the world while also taking steps to protect the environment,” said Jeremy Wensinger, President of Cobham Defense Systems.

“The opening of Cobham Composite Products’ $9.2 million state-of-the-art facility is good news for the City of Suffolk as well as our nation’s defence industrial base,” said Senator Jim Webb (D-Va.), who secured $3.1 million for production of the U.S. Air Force’s Miniature Air-Launched Decoy fuselage at the facility. “Cobham, an international leader in aerospace and defence manufacturing, hopes to generate more than 200 new jobs in the Suffolk area by 2014. Out of the 32 possible locations in the Midwest and on the East Coast that were considered, Suffolk rated first. Cobham’s move to the area is proof of Hampton Roads’ highly qualified workforce, business-friendly ethos, transportation network, and quality of living. I am pleased that my office was able to play a key role in helping make this project a reality.” This new facility will manufacture advanced aircraft engine components, aircraft and rotorcraft structural products, unmanned aerial vehicle components, as well as missile and munitions products for the U.S. aerospace and defence industry. “Cobham is proud to be a new member of the Hampton Roads high-tech business community,” said Wensinger. “The most significant factors that sold us on Suffolk included its outstanding quality of life, close proximity to excellent academic institutions, and – most importantly – a high-tech, skilled, and disciplined workforce available through the 1,100 military personnel who retire each month in the Tidewater area. We look forward to contributing to the economic growth of Suffolk and also to giving back to the community.”

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