Last month the MAA’s Annual Conference came to Birmingham’s International Convention Centre (ICC), it was the sixth year that the conference had taken place and this year it attracted more than 200 delegates. It was organised alongside the Aero Engine Forum which attracted delegates from over 250 companies representing 12 different countries. This proved to be a great opportunity for Argenta to get involved and take up from where it left off in 2015, with the decision to sponsor the conference once again.
The main message from the speakers at the conference was that there are many opportunities for the UK aerospace engine supply chain over the next 5-10 years. The way forward is collaborative innovation in order to combat the challenges that also lie ahead. One of these challenges were highlighted as being able to develop increasingly clean-running, reliable and cost-effective aero engines. Mike Whitehead, head of Rolls-Royces’ UltraFan™ technologies programme confirmed that ‘as things get bigger and more complicated, we have to collaborate’.
The conference referred to the industry targets set by the Advisory Council for Aviation Research and Innovation in Europe (ACARE), in order to meet these the industry needs to develop radical technologies in areas such as hybrid electrification. Programmes such as the National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme (NATEP) is one such example of innovative collaboration with Denzil Lawrence from Boeing, identifying that …“NATEP is a wonderful collaborative forum and a good way of seeing the capability and commitment of suppliers.”
Steve Parker, Director of Engineering at Meggitt, identified that engine improvements driven by ACARE 2025 are being integrated in to the research cycle at the moment. He recognised this as an opportunity for expert suppliers to work with Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) to optimise product performance.
Other Key Note Speakers, which included directors from Moog Aircraft Group, UTC Aerospace Systems and the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI), continued the theme of businesses needing to be open to collaborative partnerships for the good of the industry.
It was a great conference for us, confirmed Chris Woodhams (Managing Director, Argenta). We had a good day on the stand meeting many people from different parts of the Aerospace industry. It was also great to hear from the OEMs about where they are innovating; with collaboration at the core of Argenta we hope to be forming new partnerships to support these innovations.
If you missed us at the conference give us a call!