Aerospace Can Make America Great Again – Gilmer Mirror

SpaceX just launched ten Iridium Communications satellites into low-Earth orbit. These satellites will beam phone and data service to tens of thousands of Americans who live or work in areas too remote for regular coverage.

Until recently, blasting bus-sized satellites into space using rockets that can be reused belonged in the realm of science fiction. Now, such activities seem routine.

Policymakers should take note. Americans are set to reap the benefits of aerospace firms’ race to tame the Final Frontier — and the industry’s investments in manufacturing will create new jobs and wealth in the United States, not just shuffle around current jobs by moving around government dollars.

Since its inception, the aerospace industry has produced technologies that improve Americans’ quality of life. NASA helped invent memory foam, scratch-resistant glasses, insulin pumps and hundreds of other products we use every day.

Now, private companies are driving aerospace innovation. Thanks to satellite Internet firms, airplane passengers can enjoy Wi-Fi while cruising at 30,000 feet. That has made flying more enjoyable — and far more productive. The technology also makes it possible for Americans in remote areas to access high-speed Internet.

Satellite internet has yet to reach its full potential. The satellite “internet of things” market is expected to grow nearly 20 percent each year through 2022. Improved connectivity — made possible by new satellites — will improve the efficiency of a wide range of appliances, not just computers and smartphones.

Launching new satellites to support this increased connectivity would have been far too expensive a few years ago. But today, thanks to California-based SpaceX and Washington-based Blue Origin’s advances in rocket manufacturing, the cost of launches has plummeted. The Air Force is showing interest in ultra-low cost access to space, where reusable launch technologies stimulate tactical innovation in space operations.

Next-generation rockets have even made space-based businesses look viable.

Made in Space, a California startup, recently sent a 3D printer to the International Space Station, laying the groundwork for manufacturing in zero gravity. The firm plans to produce optical fiber in space, which would eliminate the microscopic imperfections caused by gravity. This high quality fiber could revolutionize everything from medical devices to telecommunications.

Aerospace firms aren’t just spurring technological progress; they’re supporting millions of jobs. America’s aerospace sector employs over 1.2 million people and indirectly supports an additional 3.2 million jobs.

These jobs are helping to replace losses we’ve seen in the broader manufacturing sector. While the number of overall American manufacturing jobs dropped 22 percent from 2002 to 2012, jobs in the aerospace industry grew 7 percent. Aerospace exports also generated a trade surplus of over $80 billion in 2015 — the highest in the manufacturing sector.

Aerospace companies are even leading the charge to revitalize the manufacturing workforce.

Firms are designing their own educational programs, often at community colleges, to train workers. Northrop Grumman, for instance, has partnered with Antelope Valley College in Lancaster, California to create a sixteen-week vocational program in aircraft manufacturing. The firm recruits many of the students upon graduation. Such public-private partnerships could serve as a model for manufacturers in other sectors.

Private aerospace companies are strengthening the labor force and pouring billions of dollars into new technologies that will improve Americans lives. That’s a reason to cheer every liftoff.

Rebecca Grant, Ph.D., is president of IRIS Independent Research, a public-policy research organization, and director of the Washington Security Forum. She is the former director of the General Billy Mitchell Institute for Airpower Studies at the Air Force Association.

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Aerospace Can Make America Great Again – Gilmer Mirror

Trump Talk Rattles Aerospace Industry, Up and Down Supply Chain – New York Times

New York Times
Trump Talk Rattles Aerospace Industry, Up and Down Supply Chain
New York Times
Workers in the SmartCells factory in Chehalis, Wash., this month. The company makes rubber mats for Boeing workers. SmartCells has already diversified, sensing potential trouble in the aerospace industry. Credit Evan McGlinn for The New York Times.

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Trump Talk Rattles Aerospace Industry, Up and Down Supply Chain – New York Times

India clears major air defense deal with Israel Aerospace Industries – Jerusalem Post Israel News

IAI successfully tests MRSAM Air and Missile Defense System. (photo credit:COURTESY IAI)

The Indian government has cleared a $2.5 billion deal for its army to buy a medium-range surface-to-air missile defense system from Israel Aerospace Industries, another step toward signing the contract, Indian media reported on Thursday.

The MR-SAM system, jointly developed by Indias Defense Research and Development Organization in collaboration with Israel Aircraft Industry, is a land-based configuration of the long-range surface-to-air missile (LRSAM) or Barak-8 naval air defense system.

India will use it to replace their countrys aging air defenses.

The missiles are capable of shooting down enemy aircraft at a range of 50-70 kilometers.

Each MR-SAM system includes a command and control system, tracking radar, missiles and mobile launcher systems. Missiles can be fired in single or ripple firing modes from a vertical position, launched in canister configuration. The launcher holds eight canistered missiles in two stacks. A radio frequency seeker can identify a target as friendly or belonging to an enemy.

According to India Today, the Indian Army will induct over five regiments of the MR-SAM missile, which will have around 40 firing units and over 200 missiles of the system.

Delivery of the first system will begin within 72 months of signing the contract and be deployed for operations by 2023.

Following successful tests of the system in July, Israel Aerospace Industries president and CEO Joseph Weiss said, The joint development and the extensive cooperation between the industries in both countries is a testimonial to the strong partnership between the two nations. IAI is proud to lead this impressive cooperation and is highly obligated to its continuing success.

India was the worlds largest importer of major arms from 2012 through 2016, accounting for 13% of global total far greater than regional rivals China and Pakistan, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute.

Over the last five years, defense trade between the two countries has averaged more than $1b. annually.

This year, Israel and India are celebrating 25 years of bilateral diplomatic ties. To highlight the growing bilateral relationship, Narendra Modi is expected to become the first Indian prime minister to visit Jerusalem on a trip planned for this summer.

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India clears major air defense deal with Israel Aerospace Industries – Jerusalem Post Israel News

Hollywood Camera Gets Makeover for Science, Aerospace, Defense … – R & D Magazine

A high-speed cameraoriginally designed for movie production is now moving from Los Angeles to the laboratory.

Vision Research recently introduced the Phantom Flex4K-GS, a high-speed digital video camera designed specifically for the science, aerospace and defense industries. The camerawhich boasts a 35mm, 9.4-megapixel sensor and global shutteris an updated version of the Flex4K, a full-featured digital cinema camera popular in the film industry.

The biggest differences between the original Flex4K and the Flex4K-GS is its shutter. The original cinema model, which came out in 2014, only has a progressive scan shutter, also known as a rolling shutter, which isnt ideal for science and defense applications. While rolling shutter cameras typically achieve higher dynamic range and lower noise, the way the electronic shutter integrates can create motion artifacts, making high precision measurements impossible. The Flex4K-GS has the ability to switch between global and rolling shutter modes to take advantage of both scenarios.

The customers that wanted to use it as a scientific instrument werent able to use it with a rolling shutter because this makes it so the top and the bottom of the frame are actually being recorded at slightly different times, said Vision Research product manager Toni Lucatorto, in an interview with R&D Magazine. The global shutter records every single pixel at exactly the same moment in time. This makes it more reliable for people that use the cameras with measurement software.

This capability is also important in aerospace applications, as it prevents motion artifacts with propellers, motors and other rotating objects and ensures timing precision throughout the entirety of each frame.

The 4K resolution, a design feature from the original cinema camera, is also helpful for those in the aerospace and defense market, said Lucatorto.

These customers are primarily looking for cameras that will do overview shots of rocket launches, including those in space shuttle development and ballistics, she said. The camera is positioned far away from the subject with a long lens and the user wants as much resolution as possible. The 4K gets them really nice crisp images and they can position the camera far away and still get really good detail on the subject.

Also critical in the defense industry is the cameras ability to operate in extreme temperatures. Its isolated electronics and thermal design allow for operation in environments within the temperature range of -20C to 50C.

There are also many applications for this camera in the science market, said Lucatorto. One industry where she feels it will be particularly useful is microscopy.

If the camera is attached to microscopes and optics that allow you to really get super macro type-shots, the more resolution the better, she said. You can actually resolve things that you would not be able to with a lower-resolution camera.

The cameras high resolution does require tradeoffs regarding frame rate. At its full 4096 x 2304 resolution the camera can capture 938 frames per second (fps). At 4K 4096 x 2160 the frame rate goes up to 1,000 fps and at 2K resolution the camera can capture 1900 fps. The minimum exposure is five microseconds. This frame rate is slower than other high-speed cameras with lower resolutions.

The Flex 4K doesnt go as fast as some of our other models, but our science and defense customers are generally more concerned about the resolution than the frame rate, said Lucatorto. They need more than a typical camera can do, but they dont need the 100,000 frames that some of our other cameras can do.


Hollywood Camera Gets Makeover for Science, Aerospace, Defense … – R & D Magazine

DART Aerospace Starts the New Year with its Presence at HAI Heli-Expo 2017 – AviationPros.com

DART is proud to announce their presence yet again at the world’s largest helicopter trade show and exposition, the HAI Heli-Expo Show 2017 that will be held in Dallas, Texas from March 7th to 9th.


This year, DART will be featuring an impressive fully-mounted booth, where its team of experts will have the pleasure to present the new and upcoming 2017 products.

Our main priority at HAI will be to follow up with our projects and meet with our clients. The show is a great opportunity to catch up and have all the right players in the same room. We are looking forward to announce and close important deals especially after last years successful outcome. No doubt last year was a great show, we expect an even better one this year, explains Alain Madore, newly appointed President and CEO of DART Aerospace.

DART Aerospace will be exhibiting at the show for all three days, therefore come by BOOTH #8540 to discover how DART Aerospace can help you find the right products for the right mission.

Even better, here are 5 reasons why visiting the DART booth is not-to-be-missed!

1. DART will showcase its 2016 success stories

2. Get the chance to check out their new and improved AW139 specialty equipment

3. Take the opportunity to ask your technical questions to the team of experts

4. See how much they care about their clients

5. Network with colleagues and industry professionals

DART Aerospace is continuously striving to better serve its customers and its team is looking forward to meeting you all at the HAI Heli-Expo 2017 Show.


DART Aerospace is “Mission Ready”. A privately held aerospace company, we provide industry-leading design, manufacturing and market-certified solutions for the helicopter and aerospace industry. With an impressive line-up of over 700 STC’s and 5,000 products, DART offers a comprehensive portfolio of: aftermarket products, accessories, spare parts and tools for civil and military operators, all major rotorcraft OEMs, completion centers and MR&O facilities. DART’s key products include: flotation systems, landing gears, interior and exterior accessories, cargo expansion, external loads, cable cutters and filters. All this, in addition to extensive engineering capabilities and manufacturing centers delivering fast time-to-market solutions with superior customer support in over 120 countries worldwide.

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DART Aerospace Starts the New Year with its Presence at HAI Heli-Expo 2017 – AviationPros.com

Aerospace engineering may be offered in OCSD4 this fall | News … – The Tand D.com

Orangeburg Consolidated School District Four may offer students training for a career in aerospace engineering as early as this fall.

Superintendent Dr. Tim Newman reported at the February board meeting that the district is working on the initial planning stages for an aerospace engineering and manufacturing magnet school at Edisto High School.

There are two aerospace suppliers in Orangeburg County, Newman said after the meeting. A lot of jobs in aerospace industry start workers off at salaries ranging from $30,000 to $60,000, he said.

What were trying to do is to address the needs of our county and community, Newman said. The district is holding discussions with local manufacturers so it can provide students with the training they need to get good jobs when they leave school, he said.

We are trying to find a way to build those skills for the students, embed the terminology for the aerospace manufacturing sector, embed soft skills and try to react to the needs that theyre asking for, Newman said.

The district has gotten a commitment from the S.C. Department of Education to help fund a new aerospace content teacher, the superintendent said.

The magnet school will not only prepare students to go on to work in the aerospace field after high school, but it will also lay a foundation for students who want to go on to four-year colleges for a degree in areas like engineering.

The district will be working on budgets and the application process as well as going to other magnet schools across the state to see how they do things, Newman said.

Edisto High was selected to house the magnet school because of its proximity to the Cope Area Career Center, he said.

Newman said he hopes to bring the new curriculum back to the board for approval in time to get the school off the ground by this fall.

In other business, trustees approved an out-of-state trip for the Lockett Elementary School Junior Beta Club. The students will be competing at the National Junior Beta Club Convention in Orlando in June. They qualified to participate in the event by winning the following awards at the state convention in January: first place in Advertising Design Division I, first place in Quiz Bowl Division I, second place in Science Division I and second place in Book Battle Division II.

Trustees also unanimously approved second and final reading of the 2017-18 school calendar. Classes will begin for students on Aug. 22, 2017. The final day of the school year will be June 9. Three makeup days for inclement weather were built into the calendar: Jan. 2, March 30 and June 11.

Newman recognized Bethany Jameson, an Edisto High School student, who won the districts annual Christmas card contest.

He also recognized members of the Branchville High School Lady Jackets volleyball team who were recently named the S.C. High School League Class A champions.

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Aerospace engineering may be offered in OCSD4 this fall | News … – The Tand D.com

LMI Aerospace merges with Sonaca Group; no change expected in company’s Savannah presence – Savannah Morning News

Gulfstream supplier LMI Aerospace Inc., once a significant manufacturing presence in Savannah, announced last week that it has entered into a merger agreement to be acquired by Sonaca Group, a global aerostructures company headquartered in Gosselies, Belgium.

This deal brings our combined company to the forefront as a leader in the design and manufacture of complex aerostructures while working to diversify our global customer base, said Dan Korte, LMI Aerospace chief executive officer.

In addition, LMI and Sonaca have complementary product portfolios while largely serving different aerospace suppliers around the world, enabling us to better serve our customers.

Sonaca Group CEO Bernard Delvaux said the addition of LMI supports Sonacas vision of expanding its capabilities in the United States.

Sonaca and LMI have both distinguished themselves in the industry through capabilities such as wing movables, wing panels, complex fuselage and structural assemblies, and together we will be able to strengthen our competitive advantage in the global aerospace market, Delvaux said.

The deal is expected to close mid-2017, subject to LMI shareholder approval as well as certain regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions, according to LMI spokeswoman Amy Horton.

Once everything is finalized, LMI will operate as LMI Aerospace A Member of the Sonaca Group, Horton said, adding that LMI headquarters will remain in St. Louis.

Ups and downs in Savannah

LMI opened its Savannah facility with five employees in 2003. As LMI Kitting LLC, the plant located on Coleman Boulevard focused on building fuselage skin kit assemblies that worked well with local business jet manufacturer Gulfstream Aerospaces lean, just-in-time manufacturing process.

In 2006, the company added Aviation Partners Boeing as a client, producing a kit that supported the installation of winglets on the Boeing 737, 757 and 767 models. In May of 2011, the Georgia Department of Economic Development named LMI Savannah the Georgia Small Manufacturer of the Year for 2010 a category designed for manufacturers with 150 or fewer employees.

In February of 2012, the facility was named Supplier of the Year for 2011 by Aviation Partners Boeing and, in December of 2012, was named 2012 Manufacturer of the Year by the Savannah Morning News. By the end of 2012, LMIs local presence had grown from 28,800 square feet to 111,400 square feet and 55 employees. That same year, the company added a world-class, $3.2 million machining center, giving it the capability to do high-speed machining of aircraft aluminum.

A rapid decline

While 2012 was a banner year for the company, LMI suffered a reversal of fortune in 2013, reporting losses of $58.5 million compared to a profit of $16.5 in 2012. With those losses spilling over into early 2014, the company was forced to restructure its Savannah operation, shuttering the highly touted machining center it opened a little more than 18 months earlier.

In March of last year, LMI notified 20 of its remaining 32 employees that their positions would be eliminated as the company consolidated more of its assembly workto its St. Charles, Mo., plant.

By the end of April, LMIs Savannah presence was down to 12 employees, where it stands today.

The Savannah operation remains a distribution center in support of Gulfstream, Horton said, adding that she doesnt expect any change here as a result of the merger.

As for the companys cavernous building on Coleman Boulevard, its likely that part of it will be leased to other businesses.

Its a large building and were not using the full space, Horton said. But its proximity to Gulfstream makes it an ideal location for us.

Were not moving.


LMI Aerospace Inc. is a leading supplier of structural assemblies, kits and components and provider of engineering services to the commercial, business and regional, and military aerospace markets. Manufacturing more than 40,000 products for a variety of platforms and providing turnkey engineering capabilities to support aircraft lifecycles, LMI offers complete, integrated solutions in aerostructures, engineering and program management. Headquartered in St. Louis, LMI has 21 locations across the United States and in Mexico, the United Kingdom and Sri Lanka.


Sonaca Group is a global Belgian company active in the development, manufacturing and assembly of advanced structures for civil, military and space markets. The group is especially known for its capability to design and produce advanced structures such as wing movables and complex fuselages. Headquartered in Gosselies, Belgium, it has production facilities in China, Romania, Canada and Brazil. Sonaca Group also supplies engineering services, large sheet metal elements, wing panels, composite structures and machined components.




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LMI Aerospace merges with Sonaca Group; no change expected in company’s Savannah presence – Savannah Morning News

BRIEF-Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings to acquire Coleman Aerospace for $15 mln in cash – Reuters

Feb 22 Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings Inc:

* Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings Inc to acquire Coleman Aerospace; expanding into target missile vehicle business

* Deal for $15 million in cash

* Says coleman business is expected to generate approximately $40 million in revenue in 2017

* Coleman business is expected to generate approximately $40 million in revenue in 2017

* Coleman Aerospace will operate as unit of Aerojet Rocketdyne and will be renamed aerojet Rocketdyne Coleman Aerospace, Inc

* Says transaction is expected to close by end of month

* Coleman will assume new space coast integration & test facility lease at cape canaveral air force station in Florida Source text for Eikon: Further company coverage:

* Says expects earnings per share (“eps”) dilution of approximately $0.19 in 2017

BRASILIA, Feb 23 Brazilian miner Vale SA on Thursday reported net profit of $525 million for the fourth quarter, falling short of analyst expectations after booking impairments.

* Euro zone periphery govt bond yields http://tmsnrt.rs/2ii2Bqr

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BRIEF-Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings to acquire Coleman Aerospace for $15 mln in cash – Reuters

International Aerospace and Aircraft Design Awards Will Soon Be Closed to Entries – Benzinga

A’ Design Award & Competition Announces Final Call for 2017 Entries for A’ International Aerospace and Aircraft Design Awards

Como, Italy (PRWEB) February 23, 2017

The 7th International Aerospace and Aircraft Design Awards is yearly organized by prestigious A’ Design Award & Competition released its final call for 2017 entries.

International Industrial Designers, Interior Designers, Architects, Aircraft Designers, Aerospace Engineers and Aircraft Companies can register at A’ Design Awards to submit a work and get a preliminary score. Projects that pass the preliminaries can proceed with nomination, however it shall be noted there is a nominal fee for nominating entries for Aircraft Awards jury consideration.

Deadline for entries to A’ Aerospace and Aircraft Design Awards is on February 28, 2017.

List of winners of the A’ Aerospace and Aircraft Design Awards will be announced on April 15, 2017.

Winners of the A’ Aerospace and Aircraft Design Awards 2017 will be granted the highly coveted A’ Design Prize that includes a series of PR, marketing and publicity tools in addition to the Design Excellence Certificate, Lifetime license to use the A’ Aerospace and Aircraft Design Awards Winner Logo, Yearbook of Best Designs, Exhibitions of Awarded Works in Italy, Exclusive Design Award Trophy, A’ Design Awards’ Gala-Night invitation, as well as inclusion in World Design Rankings, Designer Rankings, Aircraft Design Classifications and Design Legends platforms.

The following are some example projects that could be submitted to A’ Aerospace and Aircraft Design Awards https://competition.adesignaward.com/competitions/aerospace.html

Nominations can be made at https://competition.adesignaward.com/registration.php

About A’ Design Award & Competition

The A’ Design Award & Competition has been established to promote and recognize the very best design works from across the globe while creating a global awareness and understanding for good design practices and principles. The ultimate goal of the A’ Design Awards is to push designers, companies and brands worldwide to create superior products and projects that bring positive value to society To learn more about the A’ Design Awards, please visit http://www.designaward.com

For the original version on PRWeb visit: http://www.prweb.com/releases/2017/02/prweb14093157.htm

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International Aerospace and Aircraft Design Awards Will Soon Be Closed to Entries – Benzinga

Stark Aerospace announces new CEO – The Clarion-Ledger – Jackson Clarion Ledger

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Stark Aerospaces Board of Directors announced the appointment of Michael J. McGrevey as the new CEO.

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The Arrowlite is tossed by hand on takeoff and is retrieved by landing on any surface. The camera is recessed for takeoff and landing.(Photo: Stark Aerospace)

Stark Aerospaces Board of Directors announced the appointment of Michael J. Mike McGrevey as the new Chief Executive Officer.

McGrevey s hire follows the retirement of General (Ret.) Robert H. Doc Foglesong. Foglesong will continue his ongoing appointment as Chairman of the Board.

Mike is a great fit for Stark Aerospace as we reach forward into new business domains and continue to offer quality products in the national security domain, says Foglesong said.

McGrevey is a retired officer of the United States Air Force. McGrevey held positions within the State of Mississippi, serving as Vice President of Finance and Administration and Chief of Staff at Mississippi State University and Deputy Director of the Mississippi Development Authority. McGrevey also served as President and Chief Operating Officer of JBHM Education Group. He holds a doctorate from Mississippi State University.

McGrevey will lead the companys overall strategic direction and drive growth and profitability.

Stark Aerospace has a strong commitment to protecting our armed forces both domestically and abroad. With a passion for promoting our military and protecting those who serve our country, I look forward to working with the company to build upon a long-standing history of success in the defense sector and building our commercial interests, McGrevey said.

Stark Aerospace is a global aerospace contractor with its main facility located in Columbus, Mississippi at the Golden Triangle Global Industrial Aerospace Park.

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Stark Aerospace names new CEO – Starkville Daily News

Columbus-based contractor Stark Aerospace on Tuesday announced the appointment of Mike McGrevey as the companys new Chief Executive Officer.

McGrevey will replace outgoing CEO Robert Doc Foglesong, who recently announced plans to retire. The retired general will continue with the company as Chairman of the Board.

In his new role, McGrevey will lead the company’s overall strategic direction, while working to drive growth and raise profitability.

Mike is a great fit for Stark Aerospace as we reach forward into new business domains and continue to offer quality products in the national security domain, Foglesong said.

After the announcement, McGrevey cited the companys strong commitment to protecting armed forces both domestically and abroad.

With a passion for promoting our military and protecting those who serve our country, I look forward to working with the company to build upon a long-standing history of success in the defense sector and building our commercial interests.

The company discussed McGreveys background in a press release, saying the retired U.S. Air Force officer has held many lofty positions with the state of Mississippi.

After his military service, McGrevey worked as vice president of Finance and Administration and Chief of Staff at Mississippi State University. Before that, he served as deputy director of the Mississippi Development Authority.

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Stark Aerospace names new CEO – Starkville Daily News

TransDigm Group is buying Takata Corp.’s aerospace business for … – Crain’s Cleveland Business

TransDigm Group is buying Takata Corp.'s aerospace business for …
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Aircraft components maker TransDigm Group Inc. (NYSE: TDG) of Cleveland said it has acquired SCHROTH Safety Products GmbH, as well as aviation and …
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Aerospace and Defense 2017 Predictions – AviationPros.com

2016 has been another very good year for the aerospace industry. At the Farnborough Airshow alone we sawUS$123.9 billion of deals recorded. The global A&D market continues to enjoy huge revenue momentum, with historically high backlogs for Tier 1 suppliers, and the industry has to try to keep up with this demand.

Airbus and Boeing are now at the point where they are no longer competing in the same way. There are now too many orders for both combined, and the new battleground moving into 2017, will be fought in their factories, as they race to see who can increase production rates to match their commitments. To tackle this, Boeing and Airbus have targeted 25-30% increases in production. Keeping pace with this will be a significant challenge for both companies and their supply chains, and we are seeing a huge drive for innovations that can support progress here.

But this is far from the only obstacle that the industry faces in 2017 and beyond. In this article, I will also explore developments that are happening in the aftermarket, how technology is transforming this and the manufacturing side of aerospace, as well as potential new entrants from the far East that could transform the market in decades to come.

When it comes to the aerospace manufacturing supply chain, production ramp-up is the number one priority, and it will continue to be for OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers throughout the year.Capacity is already stretched and suppliers are struggling to keep pace with the surge, resulting inbillions of dollars worthof inventory sitting in the parking bays. This has already played out in dramatic fashion in the interiors market, withserious output delays being reported by a major OEM. But this is indicative of the pressures felt across the wider supply chain.

Much of this demand is being driven out of Asia, especially China and India and this is set to continue for at least the next 18-24 months, when production rates are likely to stabilize. With this in mind, OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers are focusing on harnessing efficiencies through Operational Readiness, Supplier Management/Quality and Zero Defect production. However, this sprint for increased production, needs to be complemented with a longer-term view, in the knowledge that the abundance of orders is not an indefinite state of affairs. The supply chain is also under pressure to make these efficiencies while finding ways to reduce costs. By focusing on optimizing production processes the supply chain can achieve both in a sustainable manner, particularly when drawing on the benefits of automation as they become more established.

Zero defect manufacturing is certainly one popular answer here. With lucrative contracts at stake, suppliers cannot afford to let the slightest defect impact their reputation and bottom line; with the cost of missed deadlines incredibly high. Of course, at low volumes, defects can be managed through, but when demand for aircraft is so high, this becomes unsustainable. On top of this, there are also stringent safety requirements and exacting standards that have to be met for each flight. Pressure is therefore on OEMs to deliver vast amounts of product in very short time spans, to perfection; and efficiencies along the supply chain must be gained if this is to be achieved.

Though there is an initial upfront investment to correct defunct processes and get them to the optimal stage of production, the long term benefits are significant. For instance, due to the fact that fewer design iterations are needed, significant time savings can be gained, meaning the product lifecycle is reduced and components get to market far quicker than before.

Alongside this, as OEMs look to capture a greater percentage of the profits in the production line, we will also see more risk sharing partnerships, giving the supply chain further incentive to deliver under these difficult conditions.

The words on the supply chains lips are production rate, production rate, production rate. But increasing the volume without compromising the quality is the biggest challenge and OEMs are turning to the latest technologies in their pursuit of this zero-defect nirvana.

One of the most impactful, technological advances is additive manufacturing. The demand for additive manufacturing is growing: the global market is expected to increase from$3.07bn in revenue in 2013 to $12.8bn by 2018, exceeding $21bn by 2020. This is no more so apparent than in Aerospace and Defense (A&D) production and MRO applications.

The precision that it allows, particularly with intricate components, means that OEMs can manufacture, lighter and more accurate products faster than ever before. With greater efficiency and reduction in fuel usage high on the agenda, every gram of weight saved counts. The latter has a greater role to play in MRO as the constant high pressure placed on parts results in some components needing to be regularly replaced. The faster this can be done, the less time aircraft fleets spend grounded an issue that is costing the industry vast sums of money.Airbus China, for example, recently estimated the cost of a grounded A380 Airbus to be $1,250,000 every day.

Equally, the manufacturing process here is far more streamlined, reducing human error, and allowing rapid prototyping to stress test new innovations or design concepts, before going into mass production.

Despite the advantages of additive manufacturing in A&D, there are some challenges that need to be addressed before the technology can be adopted more widely across the industry. The nature of the inherent risks associated with aviation makes it a highly regulated sector and this impacts the speed at which 3D manufacturing processes are being adopted. The technology has drawnheavy scrutiny from regulatorsand manufacturers face a challenge in proving the safety of products produced by this new process and gaining accreditation. Some of the areas regulators are keen to focus their attention on over the next few years are how printed products will behave over time and based on the materials used, also it will be interesting to see how the industry adopts means to accelerate its adoption.

Nevertheless, despite the regulatory hurdles to overcome, significant cost and efficiency benefits are being seen across the design and manufacturing lifecycle. Additive manufacturing is set to continue to have a transformational impact on the A&D industry and it will be fascinating to see where the next innovations come from. The industry is still evolving their strategy when it comes to incorporating additive manufacturing into their operations. But all the signs are there for this technological innovation to create the biggest impact on this industry over the next 5-10 years.

I dont think you can overstate the potential positive disruption here, as additive manufacturing could fundamentally change how every OEM operates. The supply chain is set to move into a transformative period in 2017.

The most dynamic area of the aerospace industry, moving into 2017, will be in aftermarket services. With the efficiencies being imposed on manufacturing, Tier 1 suppliers are looking to garner more of their profits from the aftermarket business. They will continue to take more control of this area, either by signing long term maintenance contracts or by signing Pay-By-The-Hour agreements with airlines. But this move does not come without resistance from the rest of the market, as they will be jostling for space with traditional MROs that already operate in this space.

The aftermarket is certainly going to be the area to watch for two reasons: first the growing presence of OEMs in the aftermarket and second the disruption caused by new technologies that drive improved aircraft availability. On newer platforms, OEMs are increasing their footprint in the aftermarket and are incentivizing buyers to enter into all-inclusive aftercare packages, rather than engage with different MROs on a case-by-case basis. While OEMs see a positive long term revenue outlook here and are breaking even on new platforms faster, the buyer must accept that, given the level of IP protected technologies on-board, the OEM is better placed to manage this than any third-party MRO.

While for the older programs, OEMs are disrupting the direct component/part supplier chain by trying to become super suppliers. If we try to understand the effect based on the type of the operator: smaller and newer ones will be more willing to be a part of OEM aftercare packages, so they focus on their operational efficiencies and save their base maintenance CAPEX. Larger ones, who tend to have their own MROs for component and base maintenance and drive their operational costs down through direct component/part supplier sourcing, will now look towards OEMs for part supplies. With the newer platforms still settling in, it will be interesting to see how traditional third party independent MROs face this disruption.

The aftermarket is also where we are going to see digital transformation have the most impact. In 2017 we will continue to see sizeable investments going into big data and analytics. This will focus on developments in health monitoring, predictive maintenance and driving efficiencies throughout the MRO ecosystem, as Tier 1 suppliers look to improve reliability, reduce maintenance costs, and increase business visibility across their network.

Digital solutions are at the center of this, with modern aircraft producing upwards ofhalf a terabyte of data per flight. Sifting through this information to uncover useful, actionable intelligence is crucial. This is because data-driven decision making, when applied to traditional maintenance procedures, drives efficiencies, improving and even preventing costly operations as a result.

A practical example of this is seen in predicting maintenance requirements. Using data transmitted from sensors throughout the aircraft systems and subsystems, in line with pre-programmed safety parameters, maintenance crews can foresee the requirements of an asset before an incident occurs. As this technology develops, well soon have the ability to stream this information in real-time, while the plane is in flight, so teams on the ground will have sight on immediate maintenance requirements, and can be ready with the appropriate solution before the plane has even landed for inspection.

New players are breaking into the market and the search for real-time health monitoring of the entire aircraft and predicting unforeseen maintenance requirements could dramatically reduce costly aircraft on ground incidents and maintenance costs.

Though not an immediate concern, the industry is keeping a careful watch on new entrants to the market and the customer receptiveness to newer platforms like the Bombardier C-Series. However, the question on everyones minds moving beyond 2017 to the next 10-20 years, is What plans does China have for the aerospace market? While the introduction of Asian platforms like MRJ, ARJ, Comac (C919, C929), and CJ series of high bypass turbofans bring some fresh air, sooner or later we could soon see China raising its head above the parapet with genuine contenders to challenge traditional Tier 1 supplier platforms.

If executed correctly, new entrants from China have the potential to transform the way that planes are sold and disrupt the entire lifestyle of the aircraft from manufacture through to delivery and maintenance. With aggressive pricing, and by leveraging their large cash surplus to upend current leasing models, Asian aerospace companies could pose a threat in new markets like Africa, using this base to launch into the more established European and American markets.

As technology continues to transform the way the aerospace industry manufactures, sells and maintains its aircraft, companies throughout the supply chain must evolve, and fast! One thing is for sure, following on from a year characterized by global political and economic uncertainty, 2017 is set to be an exciting and turbulent year, and it will be fascinating to see how the race for aircraft production unfolds.

Anand Parameswaran, Sr. Vice President Aerospace & Defense, Cyient

Anand heads the Aerospace and Defense business unit. In this role, he is responsible for driving superior outcomes for clients by leveraging Cyient’s extensive capability across product design, manufacturing, and aftermarket solutions. In his previous role he was the Global Head of Human Resources and Business Excellence.Anand has earlier led Global Sales and Delivery for the Heavy Equipment, Transportation, HiTech, Consumer, and Medical (HTH) business unit. He was responsible for driving engagement, profitability and revenue growth across these industry verticals.Before Cyient, Anand worked in various information technology (IT) industry leadership roles in North America, Europe, and Asia, including positions at Wipro and Cognizant, two leading global IT consulting firms.Anand received a degree from Birla Institute of Technology and Science (BITS), Pilani, India.

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Aerospace and Defense 2017 Predictions – AviationPros.com

CEO Series: Launching Arizona’s aerospace industry – AZ Big Media

In 1992, Kjell Stakkestad, president and CEO of KinetX Aerospace, helped develop a prototype satellite ground system using off-the-shelf hardware and software products to demonstrate that a satellite ground system could be rapidly, cheaply and reliably developed. (Photo by Mike Mertes, Az Business magazine)

KinetX Aerospace faced a Herculean challenge when it was asked to develop a navigation system to guide the fastest spacecraft ever launched to the farthest destination ever explored.

We have done navigation to a number of planets, but it was a different kind of challenge going to Pluto, says Kjell Stakkestad, president and CEO of KinetX Aerospace. We had to travel 3.5 billion miles and had to hit a very precise box. It was like having to hit a dime from 5 miles away.

But KinetX delivered. After a journey of 9 years and more than 3 billion miles, the team from KinetX helped the New Horizons spacecraft hit its mark and captivate the world with the first close-up images of Pluto.

Operating out of Tempe, KinetX Aerospace is a privately held company that specializes in the design, development and operation of large-scale space systems, in addition to working on deep space missions. It is the only private company involved in deep space exploration.

Az Business had an out-of-this-world discussion with Stakkestad about the state of space in Arizona.

Az Business: Whats the story of KinetX?

Kjell Stakkestad:What we do is we make systems work. We helped the IRIDIUM satellite system get working and we are the longest-running subcontractor for IRIDIUM. We have also worked on defense projects and worked on communications systems for the military.

Now, we are trying to use what weve learned to develop intellectual property that allows soldiers to use cell phones instead of big backpacks for communications. We are using our systems to tie genetics to cancer treatment and drug trials. The medical community has all these great methods to measure everything you could imagine in a patient. But how does it all fit together? Thats what we do: systems engineering.

AB: What are you working on now?

KS: The most flashy stuff we do is space and we are very proud of that. We just launched a mission to get asteroid samples from Bennu. This project is difficult because Bennu is only 500 meters across, so navigation is tricky. There is a lot of physics and a lot of math. Theres no plugging it into a formula and doing it. But the information were going to get from Bennu will help scientists examine the origin of our planet, so its exciting.

AB: How is Arizona as a place to operate an aerospace company?

KS:The state is fantastic and has a lot of spectacular space work going on. ASU, Northern Arizona University and the University of Arizona have some of the best programs in the world. But the state has some problems, too. Arizona helped put the largest set of satellites into orbit and got almost no press. Arizona is in the top three or four states for aerospace and we tout it far less than other states. I think there are a lot of opportunities for Arizona to get itself more on the map and we miss those opportunities.

AB: What should we be doing so we dont miss those opportunities?

KS: If we had a vibrant advocacy group fighting for (and focused on) the aerospace industry, you would see commercial space and space work in Arizona grow dramatically. Arizona is a place where people want to come. The only drawback is that we have to do something about the education system. When we try to attract people here, they say, Youre 49th in education. It doesnt preclude people from coming, but these are educated people and they want their children to be well educated. So we need to do something about that.



CEO Series: Launching Arizona’s aerospace industry – AZ Big Media

India, France to set up Aerospace and Defence Centre of Excellence in Bengaluru – YourStory.com

The centre will help train 1,600 engineers and professionals in industry-specific skills in a bid to meet the rising demand for Make in India products in defence and aerospace

Keeping in mind the Make in India theme and a fast developing ecosystem of aerospace and defence industry, a Centre of Excellence is being set up in Bengaluru in collaboration with a French non-profit for imparting industry-specific, high-end skill training to make the available manpower readily employable.

As part of the centre, two campuses will be started by the government of Karnataka along with French aerospace and defence major Dassault Systems.

Karnataka’s IT and BT minister Priyank Kharge told YourStory that the government had been in talks with Dassault since Bengaluru ITE.biz, the countrys premier tech event held last November.

Kharge explained,

We have been working closely with Dassault and the French government as they liked our idea of establishing a Centre of Excellence to address skill requirements for the growth of aerospace and defence. As Karnataka is the first state in the country to have an aerospace policy as well as the first to establish two aerospace manufacturing hubs in Bengaluru and Belagavi, they realised we were also looking at the future with all seriousness, as the total project cost for setting this up is Rs 288.68 crore.

Of the two campuses in Bengaluru, one will come up at Muddenahalli, which will help attract rural talent in this specialised sector. An MoU has been signed with Institut Aeronautique et Spatial (IAS), a Toulouse-based non-profit organisation.

The CoE will provide hi-end training and skill development to about 1,600 engineers every year to make them readily employable in the sector. The course certificate will be given by Visvesvaraya Technological University (VTU), which governs and oversees engineering colleges and courses in the state.

India is currently the eighth largest spender on defence in the world, and this spending is expected to grow 7-8 percent per annum. Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, who was in the city last week for the Make in India Karnataka conference, as well as Aero India 2017, said for the first time, the Ministry of Defence had sourced almost 95 percent of defence requirements locally. With an estimated $250 billion worth of procurement seen over the next decade, the defence sector is expected to give a major push to the Make in India initiative.

Bengaluru has for long been the hub for aerospace and defence sector, in terms of manufacturing, testing and R&D, being home to established players such as state-run Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, Bharat Electronics Limited and DRDO labs and private players like Airbus, Safran, Mahindra, Tata and others. There are also a large number of small and medium enterprises that serve as ancillary units as well as startups that produce hi-end technology for major players.

HAL and the Indian Space Research Organisation alone have together nurtured more than 6,000 manufacturing units, and a large pool of trained manpower is already available.

StateIndustries Minister R.V. Deshpande said,

Karnataka accounts for 65 percent of the national share from this industry and also has notched up several firsts, such as an aerospace policy, an aerospace park on 1,000 acres of land near the Bengaluru International Airport, 600 acres allotted to HAL to set up a helicopter plant in Gubbi, Tumkur district, and the countrys first privately-owed aerospace SEZ in Belagavi.

The CoE will improve the skills of employable engineers and other professionals through industry-focused skill development programmes, he added.

The CoE will use a 3D experience platform developed by Dassault, which has worked with the worlds leading companies for over 35 years. Dassault will also bear the bulk of the project cost, by contributing Rs 251 crore in the form of developing software packages, updation, licence charges, faculty and training. The Karnataka government has provided land and will also contribute around Rs 34 crore over the next three years for the project.

Samson Khaou, Managing Director-India, Dassault Systems, said his company is delighted to partner with the state government in its endeavour. Dassault will draw upon its expertise and experience and ensure that the training imparted at the CoE is of high standards, matching that of the industry around the globe.

Pierre Valenti, Managing Director, Institut Aeronautique et Spatial, said his institute will help turn the CoE into a world-class institution for the aerospace and defence sector.

Academic partner VTU will provide space at both the centres and is also expected to spend Rs 4.5 crore for putting together infrastructure, provide manpower to run the centres, as well as meet costs towards power, Internet and other expenditure, the minister added.

The CoE will ensure that the competitive advantage of Karnataka as an aerospace and defence hub in the country is retained and strengthened. There is an acute shortage of skilled engineers and professionals in the area and CoE will act as a catalyst for growth. The youth here can get exposure in industrial design as a career option, Kharge added.

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India, France to set up Aerospace and Defence Centre of Excellence in Bengaluru – YourStory.com

Under the radar: Broomfield’s Ball Aerospace sees its tactical unit take off – Boulder Daily Camera

Tucked deep within Broomfield-based Ball Corporation, far from its globe-dominating can business, is a small division whose growth has become so compelling that it will almost double the size of its Westminster manufacturing center this year, adding hundreds of jobs in the process.

Strolling through the corridors of this classified facility, Ball Vice President of Tactical Solutions Rob Freedman is greeted by young engineers, carrying prototypes of antennas and other devices, some of which, when realized, will be tucked into the wings of military fighter jets.

In 2016, the engineers and technicians who work here shipped 7,000 custom made parts and devices, most of which can’t be photographed or discussed publicly.

Ball Aerospace manufacturing center expansion in Westminster. (Courtesy Image / Daily Camera)

Known for dreaming up, then designing and ultimately manufacturing lenses for navy ship scopes, high-tech, ultra-rugged antennas for fighter jets and various pieces of flight hardware for earth and space, the tactical solutions division has seen its backlog surge dramatically. At the end of 2016 it helped grow the backlog at Ball Aerospace to $1.4 billion, its highest point since Ball Aerospace and Technologies was founded 60 years ago.

Tactical solutions is one division of Ball Aerospace and Technologies. Within the Westminster manufacturing facility, Freedman is dwarfed by giant autoclaves and warehouse-like rooms whose ceilings top out at 45 feet, more than five times taller than the average office ceiling. Bright yellow pulleys hang down from those towering ceilings, ready to pick up which ever 10-ton part needs to be lifted and moved.

When the division breaks ground on the expansion in April, it will start a months-long process where the existing 200,000 square foot facility will morph to 345,000 square feet, a 72 percent increase in capacity.

Damon Zuetell is industrial operations manager. His job is to ensure the new space is built quickly and that it keeps hundreds of research and design engineers near the test labs and manufacturing rooms where the devices are imagined and then constructed.

“We like to keep smart people close to what they are building,” he said.

As the division’s backlog has grown so have its projects. “Our stuff is getting bigger as we develop higher value, more complex systems,” Freedman said.

Ball Corp. CEO John Hayes told Wall Street analysts last month that the company had decided to expand the Westminster facility.

“It’s a capacity issue,” Hayes said. “We don’t have enough manufacturing space to execute on all the wins we’ve gotten.”

In the years ahead, “hundreds and hundreds” more fighter planes will be made, Hayes said, and Ball Corp. has won contracts to make many of the parts needed for them to be mission-ready.

Chicago-based MorningStar analyst Charles Gross tracks Ball Corp. That the company has opted to invest in a factory expansion is noteworthy, he said.

“In general Ball operates a conservative business and they are cautious about allocating capital,” Gross said. “They want to be confident they will have a high return on that capital before they lay it out.”

Last year, Ball Aerospace, which includes Freedman’s division, generated profits of $88 million, on sales of $818 million, roughly 10 percent more than in 2015, according to the company’s year-end earnings statement.

These earnings are just a small piece of Ball’s overall global business, which generated profits of $224 million on sales of $9.1 billion.

The exterior of the Ball Aerospace and Technologies Corp. Manufacturing Center on Monday in Broomfield. Feb. 13, 2016 (Jeremy Papasso / Staff Photographer)

Last year, Ball’s aerospace division added 300 workers and this year it plans to add 300 more, according to spokesman William Rigler. That 600 person bump doesn’t include additional hires that will come when the manufacturing center expansion is complete.

When the two years of hiring are combined that constitutes a more than 30 percent jump in Ball’s overall Colorado employment base of 2300.

That is nearly 10 percent of Colorado’s overall aerospace direct employment base of 25,500 people, according to a new industry report by the Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation. When manufacturing sub-sector jobs are counted, the state employs more than 180,000 people in this arena.

That employment base is one of the reasons Colorado ranks no. 2 nationwide for aerospace employment, according to Jay Lindell, who acts as lead on aerospace for the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade.

Ball is the largest “Colorado-grown” aerospace firm, Lindell said, among eight who have major operations here. It is known as a niche player, one that provides specialized parts and equipment to such behemoths as Boeing, Northrup Grumman, Raytheon and Lockheed Martin Corp., among others.

Despite the Trump Administration’s concerns about the cost of Lockheed’s F-35 figher jet, Ball officials and industry experts are taking a wait-and-see approach on what if any effect politics will have on the long-term defense and aerospace budgets.

“It’s too early to tell,” Lindell said.

Back at the manufacturing center in Westminster, Freedman reels off each of the quality honors the center has won in the past five years, with awards in gleaming showcases coming from Boeing, Northrup Grumman, Raytheon and Lockheed Martin, among others.

His division was named one of the top 25 suppliers out of thousands for its work on the F-35 and it has won similar awards from the other major U.S. defense manufacturers.

“It’s our 100 percent ‘stick rate,'” Freedman said. “When we go down to the (Lockheed) plant in Texas, and they install our devices on those jets, our’s work. So they never have to be taken off to fix. They like that.”

Jerd Smith: 303-473-1332, smithj@dailycamera.com or twitter.com/jerd_smith

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Under the radar: Broomfield’s Ball Aerospace sees its tactical unit take off – Boulder Daily Camera

What the state of toilets at India’s aerospace megashow tells us … – Times of India (blog)

Misogyny shows itself up in many ways. In public places, it shows in the way women are denied even the most basic facilities like toilets.

The Indian ministry of defence has just concluded the 11th edition of the biennial aerospace show Aero India in Bengaluru. Superlatives have frequently been used by government officials over the years to describe Aero India, which indeed is Indias biggest defence and aerospace event, attracting the whos who of the global defence industry, including presidents and CEOs.

This year over 250 foreign and roughly 270 Indian companies exhibited in Aero India, which was jointly inaugurated by ministers of defence and civil aviation. As is the trend worldwide, even in the defence industry, the number of women in the workforce has increased over the years. So at Aero India 2017, there appeared to be as many women at Air Force Station Yelahanka, which has been the permanent location of the show for the last two decades, as there were men. Even at extremely conservative estimates, there were at least 2,500-3,000 women at the show every day.

Yet, it didnt occur to the organisers that these women would need access to clean toilets. There were just under a dozen toilets for women at the show, each afflicted with its own unique problem. Some had no water, toilet paper rolls or soaps; some had too much water on the floor, forcing the users to roll up their trousers or hitch up their sarees before entering, while some demanded a cross-country trek over unpaved ground, difficult to negotiate in heels.

One thing united them all: absolute lack of hygiene. For a show of this level, the organisers had hired local cleaning women to attend to the toilets, instead of professional housekeepers.

This makes a mockery of everything we claim and aspire for at so many levels. Lets take each level one by one. We claim to be a leading power in Asia; our prime minister asserts that our time has come and the world must take notice; and he is exhorting global industry to come and Make in India. Yet, at the biggest showcase event, the infrastructure is so abysmal that foreign participants make sympathetic noises while putting India back in the third or the fourth world.

Aero India is basically a national show for us unlike the Dubai or the Singapore Air Shows, which are more regional in nature, one exhibitor told this writer, explaining why they neither expect nor get delegations from other Asian countries to Aero India. To look at the latest trends in defence and aerospace technology, customers from those countries prefer to visit Dubai or Singapore. To attract international customers, you will really need to work on the infrastructure, she said. After all, it stands to reason that if you cannot get something as basic as the toilets right, how can you be trusted with high technology?

But we do get a lot of technology right. Isro has just launched 104 satellites in a single flight. So what is this disdain towards providing toilets for women, if not a veiled attempt at keeping them out of public places? And if this is the state at a premier show crawling with so-called VIPs, one can only shudder to think of the state of toilets in lesser places.

At the second level, what does it say about the governments Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM)? Clearly, if usable toilets cannot be provided for women at even high profile events, the fate of the millions of these being built under SBM is not difficult to imagine. In most urban areas, the problem is not of a toilet structure, but its condition.

Finally, the government is committed to giving greater opportunities to women in the armed forces. But by not providing them civilised facilities at their places of work, isnt the government telling them that we may have opened our doors, but our minds remain shut?

DISCLAIMER : Views expressed above are the author’s own.

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What the state of toilets at India’s aerospace megashow tells us … – Times of India (blog)

Techrules is bringing an ‘aerospace-inspired’ supercar to Geneva … – Top Gear

At least years Geneva Motor Show, Chinese automotive R&D company Techrules promised us it would be ready to start production of an all-electric supercar within a couple of years. Cue many raisedeyebrows.

Now its back, and will bring to Geneva a car. Techrules says only that it will reveal the dramatic design details of its production supercar (whether its revealing the actual, production car isnt clear), which has an aerospace-inspired design crafted by world-renowned automotive designers, Fabrizio and GiorgettoGiugiaro.

The car will also harbor Techruless Turbine-Recharging Electric Vehicle (TREV, for short) powertrain, which in essence uses a micro-turbine to charge an advanced battery pack. The company promises the system requires very little hardware, saving weight and space, that it may redefine how the next generation of electric vehicles ispowered and deliver a unique blend of ultimate performance, brutal power and unparalleledefficiency.

We know that this years car will have a central driving position and a fighter-jet style canopy. The interior itself will also be aircraft-inspired, and finished with premium qualitymaterials.

Well bring you more from the show floor. For now, we remain decidedlyskeptical.

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Techrules is bringing an ‘aerospace-inspired’ supercar to Geneva … – Top Gear

Aerospace company to bring 170 new jobs, $50 million investment to Northwest Florida – The Pulse

A British aerospace company announced this month the creation of 170 new jobs and a $50 million investment in a new manufacturing facility adjacent to Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport in Bay County.

The facility will be the first for GKN Aerospace in Florida and will be located at the 195-acre Venture Crossings commerce and industrial park near Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport.

This investment emphasizes our commitment to manufacturing in North America, as this new world-class facility will create jobs and strengthen our competitive position in the US aerospace market for the future, said Mike Grunza, CEO of GKN Aerospaces Aerostructures North America.

GKN Aerospace uses advanced manufacturing technologies to supply integrated assemblies in both metallic and composite materials to the aviation industry. The company employs approximately 17,000 people in more than 60 locations across three continents.

The company will receive a $2 million grant from the Industry Recruitment, Retention & Expansion Fund (IRREF) Grant Program, which is administered by the University of West Florida. The IRREF program was designed to spur research and development, commercialization of research, economic diversification and job creation in Northwest Florida.

The University is proud to provide key support for GKN Aerospaces expansion, which will help strengthen, grow and diversify the regions economy, said Brice Harris, assistant vice president for research and economic opportunity at UWF. This project and others supported by the Industry Recruitment, Retention and Expansion Fund demonstrate our commitment to attracting high-paying jobs to Northwest Florida.

To be operated on lease, the new 126,000 square-foot facility will be developed and owned by a subsidiary of St. Joe Company, and designed to meet GKN Aerospaces specific requirements. When completed, components for the Boeing 737 MAX and future 777X jetliners will be manufactured at the facility.

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Aerospace company to bring 170 new jobs, $50 million investment to Northwest Florida – The Pulse