GKN Aerospace has gained a multi-year follow on order, valued at approximately GBP280m, from Lockheed Martin for engine nacelles for the C-130J military airlifter. This new 5 year contract extension takes continuous manufacture at GKN Aerospace through to 2018 - and well into its third decade.
GKN Aerospace is scheduled to supply 37 full aircraft nacelle sets this year - almost doubling previous annual production rates. In total, the company expects to supply 158 nacelles, including spares, during the remainder of this year and is confident of delivering 2000 nacelles by 2018. With these escalations in production rates, skilled employment on GKN Aerospace's new state of the art C-130J production line is set to treble by the end of 2011 - and will include a growing number of apprentices.
The C-130J nacelle has been in continuous production at the GKN Aerospace facility on the Isle of Wight, UK since 1996. Prior to that, the Company was a leading member of the UK Industrial Support Group and was responsible for design changes required in the move from the C-130H to the C-130J nacelle.
"As the launch customer for the C-130J the UK has always had a special place in the heart of this programme." said Lorraine Martin, Lockheed Martin Vice President for C-130 Programmes. "Strong partnerships with UK suppliers, such as GKN Aerospace, are a critical element in the growing success of the world's most flexible and proven airlifter."
Phil Swash, President and CEO, Aerostructures - Europe, GKN Aerospace, commented: "This is the second long term contract placed with us by Lockheed Martin for C-130J nacelles. Over the years, our relationship has seen us work together to great effect, continuously assessing processes, introducing improved practices and innovative technologies. This has allowed us to manufacture a better product even more efficiently for the C-130J."
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