GKN has been awarded new contracts by Pratt & Whitney for the development of components for the F135 engine on the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.
The development contracts, which are worth $14.4 million, could lead to more than $1 billion in manufacturing contracts for the 6,000 aircraft, which could be produced for US and international customers over the life of the programme.
GKN’s will use its expertise in advanced composites and titanium to develop and fabricate the engine’s fan inlet case and inlet guide vanes, the engine nozzle’s static structure, front compressor case, engine blade finishing and lift fan containment case.
Work on the F135 will be carried out at three GKN US facilities – its engineering development centre in Meriden, CT, its titanium engineering and manufacturing operation in El Cajon, CA and at its manufacturing plant in St Louis, MO.
Graham Chisnall, Engineering and Marketing Director for GKN Aerospace Services, said: ‘This represents a major breakthrough in the use of advanced composites. The fan inlet case will be the largest and most complex component ever made with the Resin Transfer Moulding (RTM) process and is the first time that such a critical part of an engine has been produced in composite.’