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Developing a new project is never easy. Important information, such as customer requirements and competitors’ market positions, can be acquired only gradually, and investors must choose the appropriate direction to take for product development. Reaching large-scale production capacity rapidly can be vital.
(Published on December 2005 – JEC Magazine #21)
BY CAI JIANQIANG, PROJECT MANAGER, CIVIL MARKET DEVELOPMENT AEROSPACE RESEARCH, INSTITUTE OF MATERIALS & PROCESSING TECHNOLOGY (ARIMT), CHINA AEROSPACE SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY GROUP
At ARIMT, we have been working on aerospace materials for decades to develop a comprehensive, advanced processing technology, along with high-quality management standards. We have observed that, once the choice of a new project in the civil market has been made, it is essential to rapidly establish a stable supply – which is usually a very important issue for customers – and to invest heavily to support continuous innovation in technology and products, stitched fabrics, lightweight sandwich materials and prepregs. Our customers appreciate our steady supply of products and strict quality-control procedures. These aspects do not always go smoothly in the early stages of a project, so there is always the risk of losing a dissatisfied customer.
The Institute is the centre for research into materials and processing technology for China’s aerospace industry, and also the R&D base for advanced composites in the country.
The National Key Laboratory for Advanced Functional Composite Materials and the Aerospace Composites Members Processing Technology Centre have also been set up within ARIMT.
Therefore we make sure, when launching a new product, to: - allow for large enough production capacity to guarantee stable supply, and - establish strict quality control procedures to guarantee uniform product quality. Such efforts have helped us win the confidence of our customers.
Innovation in technology and products is a driver for continuous development when it comes to new projects.
When we launch a new product, we take into consideration our customers’ requirements with regard to that product, and also help them develop new applications.
To take one example, when we developed high-performance stitched fabric and phenolic foam sandwich material, we provided support to our customers for their application problems in boats, wind turbine blades and buildings, using customer feedback to improve our products. We also found ourselves developing a number of new products, such as glass fibre flow-guided cloth and phenolic foam sandwich board.
This strategy allows us not only to upgrade our products, but also to help our customers cut their costs and increase their production efficiency.