GKN Aerospace announces £32 million Industry 4.0 research centre in Bristol

GKN Aerospace announces £32 million Industry 4.0 research centre in Bristol

The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Greg Clark, and the Chief Executive of GKN Aerospace, Hans Büthker have revealed plans for GKN Aerospace’s new Global Technology Centre (GTC) in the UK.

GKN Aerospace announces £32 million Industry 4.0 research centre in Bristol

The new centre is funded by a £17 million commitment from GKN Aerospace and a £15 million commitment from the UK Government, through the Aerospace Technology Institute. It is expected to open in 2020. 

Once open, the 10,000-square-metre facillity will host 300 highly skilled engineers, and will include collaborative space for research and development with universities, the UK’s CATAPULT network and GKN Aerospace’s UK supply chain.

The centre will focus on additive manufacturing (AM), advanced composites, assembly and industry 4.0 processes to enable the high rate production of aircraft structures.

The facility will serve as a base for GKN Aerospace’s technology partnership in the Airbus’ ”Wing of Tomorrow” technology programme as well as new additive manufacturing programmes.

Global innovation

The Bristol centre joins a growing list of GKN Aerospace Centres of Technical Excellence around the world. Each centre has a unique technology focus - covering AM, thermoplastics and smart aero-engine systems.

Hans Büthker, Chief Executive of GKN Aerospace, said: “GKN Aerospace can trace its engineering heritage back to the 18th century and we are proud of our role as a leading player in the UK’s world-leading aerospace sector.

“The GTC will ensure we continue to develop new technologies that deliver for our customers, making aircraft more sustainable and economical. It will also support our 4,000-strong workforce in the UK, ensuring they remain at the cutting edge of the global aerospace industry.”

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