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GKN Aerospace Goes with the (Natural Laminar) Flow: Company Delivers Clean Sky Wing Structure

Edited by Senior Editor Michael Anderson from information provided by GKN Aerospace


Less drag, less fuel burned. That’s the argument for “natural laminar flow” (NLF) wing designs on future fixed-wing aircraft. A successful NLF wing is expected to reduce wing drag by 8% and improve fuel consumption by approaching 5%. That argument is now a step closer to being put to the test in Europe. In January, GKN Aerospace announced the delivery of novel wing components to be used on an Airbus A340-300 flight test aircraft. Full Article

Expanding the Horizons of Aerospace Automation

Senior Editor Patrick Waurzyniak


Once considered also-rans behind automated drilling and filling, alternative aerospace automation processes, like painting, coating, sanding and other surface preparation, are starting to catch on with aerospace builders, especially in commercial aviation where immense order backlogs loom large and demand immediate attention. Boeing, for example, forecasts that the world fleet of new commercial airplanes will double in size by 2032, with more than 35,000 new airplanes, worth an estimated $4.8 trillion, on the horizon to be built. Full Article

NASA Fired Up Over 3D-Printed Engine Components

Edited by Senior Editor Michael C. Anderson


A NASA team is fired up about getting closer to building a completely 3D-printed, high-performance rocket engine. They demonstrated this in December by assembling additive-made complex engine parts and firing them up with cryogenic liquid hydrogen and oxygen to produce 20,000 pounds of thrust. Full Article

Winners Match Technology to Aero Job at Hand

Senior Editor Jim Lorincz


There are many ways to become a winner in the aerospace machining sweepstakes that will be running well into the next decade. In addition to the proper certifications, shops must be committed to quality and adopt advanced competitive machining strategies based on the latest available technology including machines, cutting tools, workholding, and quality monitoring systems. In general, shops can go a couple of different ways. Full Article

Aerospace Industry: Makeover in Mid-Flight

Editor in Chief Sarah A. Webster


Business is everything but ho-hum in the aerospace industry these days. Backlogs are enormous, about 10 years deep. According to the most recently available data, Boeing’s backlog was about 5700 commercial airplane orders, worth $485 billion, and Airbus reported a record backlog of 6787 aircraft worth $996 billion. Full Article

Boeing Forecasts Lower Commercial Aircraft Deliveries

Senior Editor Bill Koenig


Boeing Co. today forecast lower commercial aircraft deliveries for 2016 as well as a financial projection that was below analyst estimates. Full Article

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