Preparations advance for Safran Aerospace Composites’ new U.S. production facility

06/08/2012

Construction has started – and a job training program is being established – for the new manufacturing operation in Rochester, New Hampshire being built by Safran to produce advance composites for next-generation jet engines.

Work crews have begun laying the footings at the Granite State Business Park for this new 343,000-square-foot facility – to be located on Rochester’s recently-named “Innovation Drive.”

The operation of Safran Aerospace Composites will be co-located with Albany Engineered Composites at the new complex, which is to employ some 400 people in the production of parts for the LEAP jet engine. Albany Engineered Composites has been an exclusive Safran partner since the late 1990s for the three-dimensional weaving of carbon-fiber performs.

Preparations also are underway to provide job training for the new composites center through Great Bay Community College (GBCC) of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, which recently signed a lease to open a Rochester facility. Safran has been working with Albany Engineered Composites and GBCC to identify training programs that allow new hires to adapt their existing skills for the companies’ advanced manufacturing environment, along with preparing students who could become future employees at the center.

The LEAP engine for which the new center will be supplying composite parts has been chosen to power the Airbus A320neo, Boeing 737 MAX and COMAC C919 jetliners. Designed to be more fuel efficient and eco-friendly, the LEAP’s use of composite materials for its fan blades and other components is expected to reduce the engine’s overall weight.

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