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Aurora invests in automated fiber placement technology

News International-French

30 Nov 2011

Aurora Flight Sciences announced this month its decision to make a major investment in Automated Fiber Placement (AFP) technology that will be used to manufacture larger and more complex composite structures for the aerospace industry at an affordable cost. Aurora plans to locate this equipment at its Columbus, Mississippi manufacturing facility.

After an extensive evaluation of potential suppliers, Aurora selected Electroimpact of Mukilteo, Washington to develop a “state of the art” AFP machine for delivery next year. Electroimpact is a leading supplier of automation equipment to the worldwide aerospace industry. Electroimpact has pioneered the development of modular, detachable AFP heads which permit flexibility in the manufacturing process.


“The acquisition of AFP technology is an important step in expanding Aurora’s aerospace manufacturing capabilities,” said John Langford, Aurora’s President and CEO. “AFP technology will allow Aurora to continue its leadership position in delivering affordable aerospace structures to both commercial and military aerospace customers.”


Aurora plans to utilize its new AFP capability for manufacturing programs with its key customers, including the U.S. Government, Sikorsky Aircraft, Northrop Grumman, Boeing, and newest customer, Gulfstream. Aurora expects to achieve significant advances in the size and complexity of the high-quality composite structures it can build utilizing AFP technology. Aurora intends to utilize AFP equipment to produce composite aircraft structures for both current and future aerospace industry customers.



About Aurora Flight Sciences

Aurora Flight Sciences designs and builds robotic aircraft and other advanced aerospace vehicles for scientific and military applications. Aurora is headquartered in Manassas, VA and operates production plants in Bridgeport, WV and Columbus, MS and a Research and Development Center in Cambridge, MA.



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