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11/1/2011 | 2 MINUTE READ

Biz Briefs

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Business briefs from Cirrus Aircraft, 3A Composites, Magnolia Plastics, Dassault Systèmes and FORMAX.


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Cirrus Aircraft (Duluth, Minn.) celebrated the delivery of its 5,000th airplane on Sept. 22. The company, which began production in 1999, has gone from an entrepreneurial dream to an aviation company with aircraft delivered to more than 60 countries around the world. “We are truly excited and humbled to be delivering the 5,000th Cirrus aircraft,” said Dale Klapmeier, CEO. Known for composite design and manufacture, Cirrus pioneered the FAA-certified Cirrus Airframe Parachute System that is standard equipment on all Cirrus aircraft. For nine years in a row, the Cirrus SR22 family of aircraft has been the best-selling four-seat airplane in the world. The 5,000th aircraft was purchased by Joe Whisenhunt of Little Rock, Ark.

3A Composites (High Point, N.C.) announced on Sept. 1 the opening of its new manufacturing, conversion and lab facility in High Point. The event capped an effort that began a year ago to relocate the company’s Baltek division away from the metropolitan New York City area. The new 115,000-ft2/10,683m2 facility in Guilford County first opened its doors in mid-March with the start up of the balsa product line. By the end of July, all production lines were operational and the final phase of the transition from the old campus in northern New Jersey was completed. The new building is located just off Interstate 40, near the Greensboro Piedmont Triad International airport.

Magnolia Plastics (Chamblee, Ga., USA) has announced that Magnobond 6168-1 A/B, an aerospace structural epoxy paste adhesive, is now qualified to Sikorsky Specification SS8622, Rev. 6. Magnobond 6168-1 is listed on the Sikorsky SS8622 QPL as Sikorsky Supplier Designation: SS8622-011(A). Magnobond 6168-1 A/B is now qualified for use as an adhesive/fairing compound for the manufacture and repair of Sikorsky helicopter blades, composite/metal delamination repair, insert bonding, floor board repair and other similar uses. Sikorsky, Sikorsky subcontractors and repair facilities now may use Magnobond 6168-1 A/B (SS8622-011) as an alternative or substitute for SS8622-004.

Dassault Systèmes (Paris, France) announced on Oct. 4 the acquisition of composites simulation and advanced draping simulation technology provider Simulayt Ltd. (Woking, Surrey, U.K.). The move is expected to enable Dassault Systèmes to further integrate Simulayt’s technology with its CATIA V6, to make advanced fiber simulation and lifelike part modeling and product/production simulations accessible to composites designers.

FORMAX (Leicester, U.K.) used the Composites Europe 2011 show to celebrate the successful recent installation of a new multiaxial machine and a new laminating line. Both are now in production. The specially developed and reportedly state-of-the-art Karl Mayer (Obertshausen, Germany) Carbon Malitronic Multiaxial machine has a variable width, from 1,000 mm to 1,600 mm (39.4 inches to 63 inches). Its size and flexibility are said to enable unique new lightweight constructions with minimal waste. The laminating line combines surface veils with fabrics for applications that have demanding surface finish requirements, such as Class A automotive panels. The company showcased several new products: laminated surface veils for Class A surface finishes; lightweight 0°/90° fabrics; ply orientations from ±30°; and balanced biaxials (+/-/+) from 200 g/m2 to ensure symmetrical fabrics. These join an existing portfolio of lightweight carbon fabrics for industrial applications, specialized glass fabrics for marine and industrial applications and heavyweight glass fabrics for infusion processes.