Solvay-Mubadala joint venture to provide prepreg for 777X

The joint venture will manufacture carbon fiber prepreg for the 777X empennage and floor beams at a new facility in Al Ain, U.A.E., to be operational by 2021.

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The Boeing Co. (Seattle, Washington) announced at the Farnborough Air Show on July 11 that it will source carbon fiber prepreg for the Boeing 777X from a new joint venture formed by Mubadala Development Co. (Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates) and Solvay (Brussels, Belgium).

Boeing is the first customer for the Mubadala-Solvay joint venture, which will produce primary structure composite material for use in manufacturing the 777X empennage and floor beams. Mubadala and Solvay are planning for the joint venture to be operational by 2021 in a new facility built in Al Ain, U.A.E.

"After close collaboration with Mubadala and Solvay to expand the supply of aerospace composites, Boeing is pleased to be the first customer for their new joint venture in the U.A.E.," said Boeing Commercial Airplanes president and CEO Ray Conner. "Our commitment to purchase this prepreg material for the 777X meets several important goals for Boeing, from further advancing aerospace industry development in the U.A.E. to expanding high-quality materials in our supply chain."

"Boeing has been a key global partner of ours for years," said Homaid Al Shimmari, CEO of aerospace and engineering services, Mubadala. "Together with Solvay, we will further develop our capabilities in advanced composite materials production in order to expand the supply chain and create a materials ecosystem. The creation of a new manufacturing facility at the Nibras Al Ain Aerospace Park supports our efforts of delivering on Abu Dhabi's Economic Vision 2030 by developing a regional Aerospace Hub for Abu Dhabi."

Composites account for 50% of structural weight of the 787 Dreamliner, and the 777X will have the world's largest composite wing. Production of the 777X will begin in 2017, with its first delivery in 2020.

Since 2009, Boeing and Mubadala have signed several agreements to advance their collaboration in mutually beneficial ways, including in aerospace composites manufacturing. In 2013, Boeing and Mubadala announced a new Framework Strategic Agreement to increase the long-term role of Mubadala as a direct supplier to Boeing, including support as Mubadala developed prepreg manufacturing in the U.A.E.

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