Round-the-clock engineering design services for the aerospace industry will flow from a new scheme from GKN Engage, part of GKN Aerospace Services, it was announced at the show yesterday.

The company has opened a design and analysis operation in Melbourne, Australia where it will hire 250 engineers. It will complement resources elsewhere and enable it to offer engineering services across all time zones.

GKN Engage's strategy is to meet increased demand from major aerospace companies driven by the launch of big projects such as the Airbus A380 and potentially the Boeing Sonic Cruiser. It is also looking at military programmes such as the Airbus Military A400M transport and the US Joint Strike Fighter (JSF).

It's a move to address the skills shortage, particularly in Europe and the US, caused by cutbacks in training in the 1980s and early 1990s. The company aims to help clients speed up development by offering 24-hour engineering service capability using virtual design teams working across time zones in the US, Europe and Australasia. The company is investing heavily in the information technology to make it possible.

GKN Engage has signed two new agreements with Airbus UK to support the design and development of the A380 wing as well as for in-service support for existing programmes.

Source: Flight Daily News