The “AVIC Centre for Materials Joining and Surface Engineering” was officially opened on 18 September when a high-ranking AVIC delegation, led by Dr Xin Guo Zhang, Executive Vice President of AVIC, visited TWI in Cambridge.
The 5-year agreement sees a number of AVIC group companies joining the agreement including AVIC MTI, AVIC Composite Corporation Ltd, AVIC Institute for Special Structures of Aeronautical Composites and AVIC Beijing Precision Engineering Institute Aircraft Industry. TWI and AVIC MTI will develop a research-based collaboration to conduct research in civil aeronautical engineering, explore mutual areas of interest and disseminate scientific information. TWI and AVIC MTI will also explore external funding for joint activities both in China and the UK, as well as across Europe.
Speaking on the agreement, TWI’s Chief Executive, Christoph Wiesner said:
“TWI is pleased to be working ever-closer with its longest standing Chinese Member company. A new co-operation will focus on generic near-market materials and manufacturing technology development as well as technology transfer. This is a great opportunity for TWI to work with one of the largest aviation groups in the world at a more strategic level and we are looking forward to address effectively their R&D needs and to advance know-how in materials joining and manufacturing technologies.”
Initial research topics include friction stir welding, arc welding and laser welding of aerospace alloys. There will also be research into cold spray coating, repair and additive manufacturing for aerospace components and lightning strike protection of polymer composite structures. The agreement will also see staff being seconded from AVIC MTI to TWI, while regular seminars will facilitate the promotion and sharing of information between TWI and AVIC MTI.