Terma composites capabilities assessed for Boeing commercial aircraft

Danish composites manufacturer Terma already provides winglets and other parts for defense applications, and could begin Boeing commercial aerospace work following this favorable review.

Terma (Aarhus, Denmark) and The Boeing Co. (Seattle, Wash., USA) on Jan. 4 announced that Boeing has completed a detailed site survey of the Terma facility in Grenaa, Denmark, to assess the capabilities for possible commercial airplanes work involving composite materials.

“Terma has a highly specialized production capability in composites, and this qualification by Boeing Commercial Airplanes is an important step toward increasing our commercial aircraft business,” said Terma vice president, strategic marketing Jørn Henrik Levy Rasmussen. “During the survey, we demonstrated our growing capabilities in the areas of design, production control, machining, composites, assembly and quality management.”

Boeing conducted the site survey in support of its growing business relationship with Terma that includes firm contracts and emerging opportunities in defense and commercial aerostructures. Boeing is moving forward with a plan to build long-term, sustainable partnerships with Danish industry as part of an industrial cooperation program for its F/A-18E/F Super Hornet bid in Denmark’s New Combat Aircraft competition. Through the Super Hornet industrial cooperation program, Terma could become a key supplier of composite materials and other parts to Boeing’s commercial aerospace business.

Terma is already producing winglets for commercial airplanes, various composites structures for fighter jets and engines, all of which reduce fuel consumption significantly and is of great interest to commercial aerospace companies. “This visit confirmed Terma could be a viable partner and supplier of commercial aerospace structures,” said Boeing Northern Europe president Jan Närlinge. “We were impressed not only by Terma’s current capabilities and processes, but also by their plans to grow their Grenaa facility by expanding the composites capabilities beyond the defence industry into commercial aerostructures.”

Terma has delivered advanced capabilities to Boeing and its subcontractors on a number of Boeing programs, including electronic components and harnesses for the NATO AWACS (Airborne Warning and Control System) and the Electronic Warfare Management System for the P-8A, the U.S. Navy’s newest maritime patrol aircraft. In August 2009, Boeing selected Terma to provide the Aircraft Survivability Equipment (ASE) integrator for the CH-47 Chinook Medium to Heavy Lift Helicopter program for the Canadian Forces.

Terma had 2008-2009 sales of approximately $200 million (USD) and employs approximately 1,300 people worldwide. Terma maintains several subsidiary facilities and operations in Denmark and in a number of European countries, in Singapore and at several locations in the U.S. through Terma North America Inc.