GKN Aerospace has been selected by BAE Systems as a strategic supplier for the manufacture of a range of composite and metallic structures for the F-35 Lightning II, in agreements with a potential value in excess of USD200m.
The agreements extend GKN Aerospace’s existing involvement on the F-35, which currently includes the supply of a number of complex titanium structures for the airframe and engine, providing the all-composite engine front fan case and embedded electro-thermal ice protection system for the F135 engine and designing and supplying the aircraft’s sophisticated canopy transparency.
These new packages of work bring the company’s composites expertise to the airframe for the first time and involve the manufacture of high value composite parts as well as further precision machined exotic metal structures.
Metal processing is being undertaken by the Company’s team in St. Louis, USA and Filton (UK) whilst the composites work package will be handled at the facility on the Isle of Wight in the UK. The Agreements cover all three F-35 variants including the F-35A Conventional Take Off and Landing (CTOL), the F-35B Short Take Off and Vertical Landing (STOVL) and the F-35C Carrier Variant (CV) aircraft.
Frank Bamford, Senior Vice President of Business Development and Strategy, GKN Aerospace comments: “”We are developing our business to become recognised as a technologically skilled strategic partner able to make a critical contribution to current & future programmes across design, development and manufacture as well as assembly and integration. The F-35 programme is a key focus for us and we are working alongside all our customers on the F-35, including BAE Systems, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman, as we continue to expand and evolve the support we provide for this exceptional airframe.””
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