Airbus signs composites research deal with Japanese agency

Airbus and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency will study composites use with VARTM and NDI.

Airbus (Toulouse, France) has announced a cooperation agreement with Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA, Tokyo, Japan) to research composite materials. An official ceremony was held at the Paris Air Show in the presence of Dr. Takashi Ishikawa, JAXA's executive director for Aviation Program Group, and Christian Scherer, head of Strategy & Future Programs of Airbus.

Two composites research areas already identified for study by the agreement are VARTM (vacuum-assisted resin transfer molding) and NDI (non-destructive inspection). Once the first cooperation phase is successfully concluded, Airbus and JAXA intend to extend it to other areas. Research areas may include the application of innovative breakthrough composite technologies in aerospace.

Ishikawa, said, "We are very proud to develop this partnership with Airbus and hope it is the starting point for a bright future. JAXA already has a long successful history with European research institutes, such as ONERA and DLR. This agreement opens a new chapter in the relationship with Europe."

Airbus' Scherer said, "Airbus already has more than 21 industrial partners in Japan and we appreciate the high quality, reliability, and technology level of the Japanese aerospace sector. We are always pleased to see an increasing interest from forward-looking Japanese institutions to work with us. This agreement marks the beginning of a new cooperative phase focusing on research and development and also strengthens our existing relationship with Japan."