Leonardo and Kangde Investment Group of China partner on composite structures for COMAC long range airliner
Joint venture will be responsible for the development, production and assembly of composite materials components for the CR929 aircraft.
Leonardo (Rome, Italy) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Kangde Investment Group of China (Beijing, China) within the framework of COMAC CR929 long range airliner program, which was was launched by COMAC (Shanghai, China), together with United Aircraft Corporation (UAC, Moscow, Russia), in 2017.
Leonardo will provide its proprietary technologies and capabilities for the development of a new long range airliner. Kandge will provide the financial coverage for the program. Following the finalization of the agreement the two partners will establish a joint venture named Kangde Marco Polo Aerostructures Jiangsu Co. Ltd., which will be responsible for the development, production and assembly of composite materials components for the CR929 aircraft. Kangde Investment Group is investing in a new facility in Zhangjiagang city, in the Chinese province of Jiangsu, where the carbon fiber fuselage sections for the airliner will be built.
China is expected to have requirements for more than 1,500 new wide body aircraft in the next twenty years. Leonardo is also looking at the development of the Chinese space industry and potential opportunities to collaborate in this growing market.
Capable of volume production, thermoplastic composites will gain new market share in the aerospace industry.
Applications aren't as demanding as airframe composites, but requirements are still exacting — passenger safety is key.
Fiber-reinforced plastic (FRP) replacing coated steel in more reinforced-concrete applications.