Aerospace & Defence

First components manufactured for ‘Wing of Tomorrow’ programme

17th June 2019
Alex Lynn

At the Paris Air show, GKN Aerospace announced that it has manufactured the first demonstrator wing components for Airbus’ ‘Wing of tomorrow’ research programme. The parts are samples of a section of the wing spar. GKN Aerospace’s wing technology aims to improve the productivity of the composite manufacturing process. The use of composite components can result in up to 20% weight savings.

GKN Aerospace uses its long term experience and in-depth knowledge of wing trailing edges and advanced composite technology to accelerate the development of new composite assembly automation technologies for wing primary structures.

GKN Aerospace is a long term technology leader in composite wing components. For Airbus the company manufactures the A380’s fixed trailing edge and the wing leading edges for A380, A330 and A400M. For the A350 XWB GKN Aerospace developed and now supplies the 27m long rear wing spar and the inboard and outboard flaps (including skins, spars, ribs and leading edges).

John Pritchard, CEO, Aerostructures and Systems Europe and Asia of GKN Aerospace, explained: “The manufacturing of the first composite demonstrators under the WoT programme is a true milestone. We are proud to be a partner of Airbus in the WoT research programme. The demand for lighter, stronger and low maintenance composite wing structures seamlessly fit our sustainability goals. The Aerospace Technology Institute is providing vital support for the UK’s position on the next generation of aircraft.”

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