Boeing has selected UK companies, three of which are Yorkshire based, to supply all the raw materials to its new Sheffield factory, which will make components for the 737 and 777 passenger jets.
Boeing’s first European factory, based on the Advanced Manufacturing Park, will produce 7,000 actuation system components each month, which will be shipped for assembly in Boeing’s Portland, Oregon plant in the United States.
The suppliers are:
Maher —an established Sheffield material distributor of high performing alloys and machinist of finished components, specialising in nickel, titanium and copper-based alloys. With material and engineering expertise, Maher has been a tier two member of the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre with Boeing since inception. Maher, a first time supplier to Boeing, will supply bespoke steel bar and pre-machined components, made of UK-sourced steel from Liberty Speciality Steels, from its facility located three miles from the new Boeing facility.
“This is a fantastic opportunity for Maher to be part of the Boeing supply-chain, providing machined components and bespoke steel bar to the Boeing facility in Sheffield. The team at Maher are excited to work closely with Boeing and look forward to supplying the service and support required to make Sheffield a success story for both companies,” said Donna Saul, Managing Director of Maher.
MetLase – a joint-venture between Rolls-Royce and Unipart that uses unique patented methodologies, to design and produce simple and complex tooling, fixturing and components, utilising precise laser-cutting and press-brake forming. MetLase, a first time supplier to Boeing, is based at the Advanced Manufacturing Park Technology Centre in Rotherham and is Boeing Sheffield’s tooling and fixturing partner.
Stephen Dunn, Managing Director of MetLase, said: “MetLase is very pleased to have become Boeing Sheffield’s tooling and fixturing partner. Since the joint venture began in 2015 we have developed some strong relationships with over 50 new major global manufacturing companies. The long-term agreement with Boeing marks a new chapter for MetLase, as it will enable us to become an integral part of Boeing’s future plans to develop intelligent and connected fixturing and tooling solutions using the MetLase technology.”
Aeromet International—a Worcester-based supplier of advanced aluminium and magnesium cast parts with three sites across the UK. Aeromet will supply Boeing Sheffield with high-strength, complex and multi-core aluminium cast parts.
Mettis Aerospace —a designer and manufacturer of precision forged and machined components from Redditch that has supplied the global aerospace and defence industry for more than 70 years. Mettis will supply Boeing Sheffield with steel alloy precision-forged components.
Boeing has already announced an agreement with NIKKEN Kosakusho Europe in Rotherham to provide high precision tool-holders, cutting tools and tool presetting solutions for Boeing as part of a long-term technical partnership. Nikken will work closely with Boeing’s engineering team to support the optimization of manufacturing processes to achieve production goals.
Sir Michael Arthur, president, Boeing Europe and managing director, Boeing UK and Ireland said: “In Sheffield we have an excellent local supply chain and Boeing is sourcing from these established companies because of their high-quality manufacturing capability and talented people.
“I’m delighted to bring Maher, MetLase and NIKKEN on board as new Boeing suppliers, and to extend our supplier relationship with Aeromet and Mettis. We look forward to working together.”
Vardhan Rajkumar, Chairman of Aeromet.“Aeromet are delighted to be supplying complex cast parts to Boeing’s new manufacturing facility in Sheffield. This new contract is an exciting development in our long term relationship with Boeing and is testament to the hard work and dedication of our workforce,” said
Gordon Fraser, Mettis Aerospace’s CEO said: “Our integrated centres of excellence are looking forward to working together to deliver steel alloy precision-forged components to Boeing’s first European factory. We’re proud to be extending our relationship with the company and to be part of this great venture.”
NIKKEN CEO Tony Bowkett added: “NIKKEN are very proud to be the integrator and technical partner enabling the Boeing Sheffield teams to identify, deliver, develop and optimise manufacturing processes using the latest Industry 4.0 management solutions available.”