The Departments for International Trade (DIT) and Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), together with Boeing, organised for a UK delegation (which included the Aerospace Technology Institute and up to 40 UK aerospace supply chain companies) to attend a two-day Boeing Technology Showcase in Seattle on 25th and 26th April.
Representatives from the ATI included Gary Elliott (Chief Executive Officer), Simon Weeks (Chief Technology Officer), and Cristina Garcia-Duffy (Head of Technology for Strategy and Integration).
The delegation presented UK technologies and capabilities to Boeing technical and supply chain leadership teams, with an aim to identify opportunities for incorporation onto future Boeing aircraft, and encouraging further collaboration between Boeing and UK organisations. The two-day event echoed Boeing’s commitment to initiatives with UK Government to grow supply chain opportunities, supporting the announcement earlier this year of Boeing opening a production facility in Sheffield, investing more than £20 million to manufacture high-tech actuation components for Boeing’s Next-Generation 737, 737 MAX and 777 aircraft.
The visit was a great prospect for both the UK and Boeing, presenting an opportunity to focus on collaboration efforts. The ATI played a pivotal role in illustrating the funding landscape for UK research in aerospace, presented the Institute’s UK strategy for aerospace, and provided an overview of the ATI project funding process.
A number of events took place during the visit, starting with a Boeing, ATI and BEIS meeting, where discussions on UK technology strategy and Boeing market outlook and technology priorities took place. This was followed by a technology showcase at Boeing’s facilities in Harbour Pointe, where each organisation from the UK delegation showcased mature (TRL 5 and 6) technologies. In parallel to this several B2B meetings took place between the UK companies and the Boeing technology development and R&T teams.
The discussions during our visit to Boeing provided an excellent opportunity to have face-to-face technical conversations with the R&T and engineering leadership teams. We are encouraged that key Boeing priority need areas of UK strength will develop into collaborations for UK organisations to supply Boeing with their next generation of systems, propulsion and structures technologies.