Premium AEROTEC: The largest A400M aerostructures supplier successfully ramps up series production
Since the start of the A400M programme, Premium AEROTEC’s work packages have primarily comprised the development and manufacture of assemblies for the centre and rear fuselage sections including the cargo door out of carbon fibre reinforced plastic. In addition, the company supplies all the metal pipes for these sections. A successful, worksharing collaboration has developed at the group’s production sites. The external coverings for the respective fuselage sections are manufactured in Nordenham, where the side shells of the centre fuselage section are also assembled. The milled frames for the shells in the centre fuselage section are manufactured in Varel while those for the shells in the rear fuselage are produced at the Augsburg plant. Moreover, the Augsburg plant supplies the large integral frames and longerons for the rear fuselage. The brackets for the assembly of equipment for the centre fuselage section are produced at the Bremen plant while those for the rear fuselage are manufactured in Augsburg. In addition to the cutting and assembly of metal modules, the southern site of Augsburg is primarily responsible for the production of carbon fibre composite structures. The showpiece of this technology from the Fugger city is the upper cargo door, which has the dimensions of a living-room, seven by four metres, and is subjected to extreme loads during flight as part of the pressure fuselage.
“In carrying out these tasks, especially the A400M series production, we are able to build on our workers’ decades of experience from the civil Airbus programmes and from the development and production of military aircraft such as Tornado and Eurofighter,” says Joachim Nägele, Premium AEROTEC management spokesman and Head of Programmes and Sales. “Even if we’ve only been known on the world market as Premium AEROTEC since early 2009, we embody the capabilities and knowledge that we acquired as former Airbus and EADS sites, with pioneering achievements in the area of large metal structures and in complex fibre composite materials in both aircraft sectors. And with corresponding technology centres for both material structures in the direct proximity of our Augsburg and Varel factories, we will continue to expand this knowledge and location advantage to the benefit of our customers,” states Nägele.
Dr. Dieter Meiners, Chief Operating Officer (COO) and member of Premium AEROTEC's board, affirms the importance of the A400M series programme for his company: “With currently more than 170 transport aircraft on order and good export potential, Airbus Military is an important customer for maintaining the workload of our sites. As a long-standing supplier of top-quality aircraft assemblies at competitive prices, we will not rest on our laurels, but will rather deepen our expertise in key technologies both for the A400M process chain and for further programmes in the sectors of metal and composite structures,” emphasises Meiners.
Premium AEROTEC GmbH has more than 7,000 employees and generated revenues of about 1.3 billion euros in 2010. Its core business is the development and manufacturing of metal and carbon composite aerostructures and the associated equipment and production systems. The company has production plants in Augsburg, Bremen, Nordenham and Varel in Germany, and in Ghimbav, Braşov County, Romania.