Monday, July 31, 2017

News: Boeing receives clearance for £20m facility

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Boeing Commercial Airplanes (BCA) has received planning approval for a £20m production facility in the emerging Sheffield-Rotherham Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District (AMID).

Announced in February, the new facility, to be named Boeing Sheffield, will enable Boeing to bring the manufacture of key high-tech actuation components and systems used in the Next-Generation 737, 737 MAX and 777 aircraft in-house, enhancing production efficiency and reducing costs.

Trailing edge actuation systems are responsible for extending and retracting the wing's flaps during different phases of flight. The flaps add lift to enable take-off and landing at lower speeds and provide drag to help slow the aircraft.

Sheffield City Council has approved the plans for a manufacturing and research building along with ancillary car parking and landscaping on the Sheffield Business Park (SBP), ironically for a factory making advanced parts for airplanes, at the end of where the runway once was at Sheffield's former airport.

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James Needham, senior operations manager for Boeing Sheffield, said: "We are pleased that Sheffield City Council has approved Boeing's planning application for Boeing Sheffield. It will be located on a site adjacent to the University of Sheffield's Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) in the Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District.

"Boeing Sheffield will produce actuation systems for commercial aeroplanes, specifically the Next-Generation 737, 737 MAX and 777 and will employ more than 30 people when it opens in late 2018.

"We also plan to place additional actuation systems work into Boeing Portland in Oregon, in the United States which will further build on their demonstrated capabilities. We are grateful to the Sheffield and Rotherham communities for supporting our planning application and we look forward to drawing on local talent and suppliers to make Boeing Sheffield a success."

Sir Nigel Knowles, Chair of the Sheffield City Region (SCR) Local Enterprise Partnership, added: "This multi-million-pound investment is fantastic news and further endorses the region's credentials as a global centre for innovation-inspired advanced manufacturing.

"A lot of people across the region have worked in partnership to help bring this investment about and it will play to the strengths of our supply chain and skilled workforce."

The Sheffield City Region Combined Authority agreed a £5.75m grant from the Business Investment Fund to support the inward investment. It has "strategic significance," not least because of Boeing's global recognition but in the 104 supply-chain jobs that are expected to be created as a result of the move.

The production unit at Boeing Sheffield will create approximately 10,000 pieces per month. One line will manufacture housings from aluminium castings and the other will manufacture gears from steel bar.

Ground breaking is proposed for September with production coming on stream in late 2018.

Boeing UK website

Images: Boeing / D5


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