Home' Asian Aviation : AAV July August 2010 Contents AsianAviation | JULY--AUGUST 2010 27
data for comparison to the baseline autoclave results,
as well as fabricating and testing representative
components based on the JSF design. Materials
handling, preparation and fabrication of all test
articles and prototypes will be conducted at Vector's
facility and will subsequently be cured at uickstep's
Partners supporting the contract include Lockheed
Martin, BAE Systems and ITT Integrated Structures.
At the end of the contract, these companies can elect
to pursue full quali cation of the process for use in
uickstep has already secured work for traditional
autoclave manufacture of composites on the JSF.
Late last year, uickstep signed a memorandum
of understanding (MoU) with Lockheed Martin and
Northrop Grumman in relation to around A$700
million (US$594 million) of potential manufacturing
contracts for the JSF. at agreement was followed up
with a manufacturing licence agreement signed with
Northrop Grumman in March, which has allowed
information to be transferred to uickstep to allow
it to provide quotes on manufacturing contracts and
upgrade its manufacturing equipment.
e next step in the road to getting onboard the JSF
will be the signing of a long-term agreement (LTA)
with Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman,
which uickstep expects over the course of this
year. e LTA is "not really a determining factor",
however, Odouard says, with uickstep meeting the
milestones set out in the MoU.
"We have had numerous visits to our
manufacturing facility from Northrop Grumman
representatives to review progress on upgrading
our clean room and manufacturing equipment,
and to assess the ongoing implementation of
relevant processes including the ordering and
implementation of uickstep's enterprise resource
planning system," says Odouard.
Production for the JSF programme is set to
start in March 2012, and preparation work is
progressing very well, says Odouard. The LTA
with Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman is
expected to cover the supply of 21 di erent F-35
components. e parts would be exported to the
US for incorporation into the F-35. e production
programme is expected to last up to 30 years and
generate an annual turnover for the company of up
to A$50 million by 2015.
uickstep is also making progress in its commercial-
aviation business. In May, the company announced
that it has secured a new development contracts
valued at over A$500,000. The manufacturer
declines to name names, but the contracts include
further collaborative work with a large European
uickstep has previously worked with various
divisions of European aerospace giant EADS,
including Airbus and Eurocopter.
e new contracts include development work on
the manufacture of integrated parts in a single cure
cycle and composite-repair solutions. e work will
be undertaken at uickstep's German development
facility in Munich, and is focused on individual,
commercially-confidential programmes, says the
Odouard says the new development initiatives
have excellent potential to unlock signi cant new
business opportunities for the company.
"We are very fortunate to now have a number of
development projects running simultaneously, all of
which provide us with valuable revenue and exposure
to a wide range of potential new commercial
partnerships and commercially focused development
programmes," says Odouard. " e uickstep Process
is continuing to gain momentum in the world of
Odouard says the company expects to secure
additional high-end partnered development
programmes for the uickstep process in coming
Odouard remains hopeful that composites
produced using the uickstep Process could be
used for the Airbus A350 XWB under a partnership
with Composites Technolog y Research Malaysia
(CTRM). Last year, uickstep and CTRM signed
an MoU to fast-track the evaluation and certi cation
of the uickstep process with a view to introducing it
to CTRM's Melaka, Malaysia manufacturing facility.
CTRM is a major manufacturer of composite
components for Airbus and Boeing aircra and is
the h-largest supplier of composite parts to Airbus.
e company is working to introduce the uickstep
Process to the Airbus network, with the A350XWB
considered the ideal launch pad.
uickstep is continuing to do testing on parts, but
the company has largely "proven what we had to
prove", says Odouard, adding that it is now up to
Airbus and CTRM to make a commercial decision
on taking the work forward.
e uickstep Process is particularly suitable for
thick, tapered parts, such as spars and wing skins,
as well as for the production of complex parts in a
single cycle, such as aps and elevators, according to
uickstep continues to work with European
helicopter manufacturer Eurocopter under a ve-year
co -operation and development agreement signed
in 2007. e partnership was originally aimed at
producing parts for the manufacturer's helicopters,
particularly the NH-90, developed by NHIndustries
consortium, which includes Eurocopter,
AgustaWestland and Stork Fokker Aerospace.
A lot of research and development work is going
on under that partnership, says Odouard, with the
goal of moving towards actual production work.
In the meantime, the company continues to
Quickstep continues to work with Eurocopter with the aim of
producing parts for the European manufacturer's helicopters.
Links Archive AAV June 2010 AAV Sept 2010 Navigation Previous Page Next Page