GE Aviation, Hamble Initiates Production of the Airbus A350-1000's Wing Fixed Trailing Edge Package

Production of the wing fixed trailing edge package for Airbus’ A350-1000 jetliner has begun at GE Aviation, Hamble, marking a new milestone in the largest design and manufacture contract awarded in the 78-year history of this GE Aviation Aerostructures business.

The first element produced is a spoiler hinge bracket, which was manufactured today in GE Aviation’s machining facility at Hamble-le-Rice, United Kingdom.

GE Aviation, Hamble has full responsibility for designing and building the wing fixed trailing edge packages on the new A350-1000 variant and the in-production A350-900 version of Airbus’ twin-engine A350 XWB jetliner, comprising more than 3,000 deliverable components per aircraft – involving complex machined parts, structural composite panels and assemblies.

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The A350-1000’s strengthened, higher performance wing will experience additional loads in flight, necessitating a high level of technical change and integration to the GE Aviation, Hamble-supplied wing fixed trailing edge package. It also involved coordination throughout the supply chain, and with the A350 XWB engineering plateau established by Airbus at its Filton, UK facility to ensure close and timely collaboration with other risk-sharing partners and agreement on all technical interface requirements.

GE Aviation, Hamble has been utilizing fully-integrated product development teams, visual management techniques, configuration and risk management processes, along with IT tool suites to meet the program’s lead times and delivery schedules. The experience gained with these best practices will be applied as appropriate through other GE Aviation, Hamble operations.

Supporting the A350 XWB engineering activities managed by GE Aviation, Hamble are the resources of its GE Aviation parent company, including satellite GE Engineering centers in Poland and India.

To meet the A350 XWB’s production volume and to accommodate the ramp-up in output rate planned by Airbus, GE Aviation, Hamble is expanding its capacity and refining efficiencies. This includes an all-new 9,000-square-meter composites production center, which is part of a site investment of more than US$50 million to support future manufacturing and new technology developments. The composites facility is well advanced in its construction, with its inauguration targeted for the third quarter of 2015.

Source: GE Aviation
Date: Nov 4, 2014