Monday, June 4, 2018

News: Boeing flies in to see AMRC apprentices

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Senior Boeing executives were in the Sheffield city region (SCR) last week ahead of the operations at Boeing Sheffield opening later this year.

General manager of Boeing Portland Dave Hyem and his team came to see the R&D work at the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) and meet some of the Boeing apprentices currently training at the AMRC Training Centre in Rotherham.

The facility is the first to be built in Europe for aerospace giant Boeing, who chose Sheffield based on its longstanding partnership with the AMRC, its skilled workforce and investment in research, training and development.

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The R&D programme Boeing has embarked upon with the assistance of the AMRC is developing the new manufacturing techniques that will enhance production efficiency and reduce costs whilst maintaining quality. These game-changing technologies will be utilised in the production of actuation system components for Boeing's Next-Generation 737, 737 MAX and 777 aeroplanes at Boeing Sheffield.

Head of the AMRC Machining Group, Matt Farnsworth, said the visit was a great opportunity for the team to see the R&D programme in action and showcase its successes and goals for the next 18 months, in which the AMRC will continue to support Boeing Sheffield as the manufacturing processes are embedded and matured on site.

The visiting party saw demonstrations of the manufacturing processes and technologies being developed and met with some of the team that will make up the core of Boeing Sheffield's staff, including apprentices.

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AMRC project engineer Beth Cousins and Boeing apprentice Joel Knowles demonstrated a machining process for one of the components and the gains the AMRC has made by optimising the cycle times for its production.

Beth has also been working with the Boeing apprentices to familiarise them with the machining programmes and capabilities, ready for the start of operations at Boeing Sheffield.

Beth said: "We want them to be straight out of the starting lines when Boeing Sheffield opens, so they can walk through the door on day one and be confident they know the production processes inside out."

Joel said working with Beth and the AMRC team has given him insight and perspective into the manufacturing processes: "It's given me a great head start in training and I've been able to see how wide in scope the programme of work is that will take place in Boeing Sheffield. It's exciting to have had the opportunity to be part of the future of such an incredible company as Boeing, straight from school."

Beth reiterated Joel's enthusiasm: "The work has been so exciting, not many people get the opportunity to do such vital work and it is satisfying to see it coming to fruition.

"It's great to see the Boeing team's interest in the processes being developed from a shop-floor level; everyone is so keen to see the progress we have made."

Currently under construction on the Sheffield Business Park and with 66,000 sq ft of floor space, Boeing Sheffield will initially employ 30 people on opening, growing to more than 50 employees. This includes 19 manufacturing apprentices.

Boeing website
AMRC website

Images: AMRC

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