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5th June 2017, Marlborough, MA

Web Industries opens composite formatting operation for aerospace applications

Atlanta ply cutting and kitting operation is located at Web’s Suwanee, GA-based Composites Center of Excellence. Web Industries’s CAD Cut division has announced the opening of its Atlanta ply cutting and kitting operation located at Web’s Suwanee, GA-based Composites Center of Excellence. According to the manufacturer, the new facility gives the aerospace manufacturing industry additional risk mitigation and outsourced capacity, critical supply chain benefits and virtually mistake-proof delivery of ply-formatted and kitted advanced composite materials.

The announcement was made in conjunction with SAMPE, which took place from 23-25 May, at the Washington State Convention Center, Seattle. At the show, Web Industries is exhibiting a full range of slit tapes, chopped thermoplastics and ply formats.

New facility

The new facility includes five cutting tables, laser guidance devices and quality control systems that are designed to ensure every ply in a kit is in the correct order. New video systems positioned above the cutting tables maintain robust records management and traceability for every product.

According to CAD Cut General Manager Ben Winters, growing market needs for formatted composite materials and related support services prompted Web Industries’ US$ 2 million investment in factory space, equipment and highly trained personnel. The facility gives the aerospace industry much needed redundancy for sourcing of ply-formatted and kitted advanced composites. With the facility’s opening, CAD Cut becomes the aerospace industry’s only advanced composites formatting partner having three separate manufacturing locations, he says.

“The Atlanta ply cutting and kitting operation mitigates the risk of supply shortages,” said Winters. “Here in Georgia, we produce the same product as our Denton, Texas and Montpelier, Vermont plants. If for any reason one plant should experience a disruption, production can shift to the other sites, providing customers with an uninterrupted supply chain.”

Aerospace customer needs

Located within Web Industries’ 225,000 sq. ft. Composites Center of Excellence, the new operation provides extensive room for expansion. “Boeing’s mid-2016 Current Market Outlook forecasts overall demand for nearly 40,000 new commercial airplanes during the next 20 years,” said Winters. “The report also says the aviation sector will continue to see long-term growth with the commercial fleet doubling in size, and that we can expect to see passenger traffic grow 4.8% a year over the next 20 years. We are equipped and ready to support the aerospace industry’s expanding needs for product and vendor managed inventory solutions over the next decade and beyond.”

The CAD Cut operation shares extensive freezer capacity with its Web Industries’ parent, whose freezers are located adjacent to the production area. The freezers are said to enable CAD Cut to store advanced composite materials well in advance of deliveries, saving aerospace manufacturers inventory costs. The facility is a virtual one-stop shop, backed by expert application engineering resources.

Saving costs

Winters says that the expansion to Atlanta allows CAD Cut to continue the mission to save manufacturers costs via logistics efficiencies, the elimination of scrap, and by freeing up cash and reducing waste associated with the purchase of inventory. The business also offloads the need for manufacturers to invest capital in cutting tables and production facilities.

“We can accommodate minimum orders and long lead times and apply our decades of experience to the most challenging of advanced composite applications,” said Winters. “This leaves aerospace manufacturers free to concentrate on what they do best: employ their high level technical competencies on building finished aerospace components.”

Production takes place in a Controlled Contamination Area (CCA) that meets the ISO 14644-1 Class 8 standard. The facility’s conveyor driven cutting tables are separated by spacious aisle ways that contribute to manufacturing efficiency. Finished product is charged at fixed prices. Formatted multi-ply products are supplied as turnkey kits. The Atlanta operation began processing its first orders in May 2017.

www.webindustries.com

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