The contract follows Boeing’s 2017 qualification of the LMI operation as a provider of thermoplastic composite parts. Thermoplastic composite materials are renowned in the aerospace industry for providing remarkable costs savings when produced at rate compared to thermoset composites and advanced metals. These savings are especially realized on smaller parts, where final finishing work on parts formed from other materials can increase per-part cost. LMI also achieves cost savings by using some automated technology in the production process and by designing tools so parts can be produced in batches. Thermoplastics also provide the typical composites strength and weight advantages compared to metals.
“We are pleased to help expand Boeing’s supply base for this lightweight and cost-effective technology,” said Don McEwen, general manager of LMI’s composite and testing facility in Everett. “Our thermoplastics work also expands LMI’s portfolio of composite fabrication and assembly manufacturing work.”
LMI’s Everett operation, which was established in 1989 as Integrated Technologies and acquired by LMI in 2009, also supplies numerous thermoset packages to Boeing for the 787 Dreamliner, 777X, 767 tanker and V-22 programs, as well as to Sikorsky, Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation and Gulfstream. The site performs composite testing, research and development, and manufacturing for U.S. and international aerospace customers.
Companies: LMI Aerospace