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Wichita, KS, United States

Spirit AeroSystems, Inc. , based in Wichita, Kansas, is the world's largest first-tier aerostructures manufacturer. The company builds several important pieces of Boeing aircraft, including the fuselage of the 737, portions of the 787 fuselage, and the cockpit of nearly all of its airliners. Spirit also produces fuselage sections and front wing spars for the Airbus A350. Spirit's main competition comes from Vought Aircraft Industries, UTC Aerospace Systems, Alenia, and Kawasaki Heavy Industries.Spirit was formed when Boeing Commercial Airplanes sold its Wichita division to investment firm Onex. Boeing Defense, Space & Security retained its military business in Wichita, which lies on neighboring land. The Wichita division was responsible for construction of many important aircraft in Boeing's history, including the B-29 Superfortress, B-47 Stratojet, and B-52 Stratofortress. Spirit can trace its legacy back even further to Stearman Aircraft, which was founded on the same site; Stearman later became part of Boeing. Spirit also includes North American Aviation's former Tulsa and McAlester facilities On Aug 8, 2005, Spirit AeroSystems announced that Ulrich R. Schmidt had joined the company as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, reporting to Jeffrey Turner, President and CEO.On January 31, 2006, BAE Systems announced it had agreed to sell its aerostructures business, based at Glasgow Prestwick Airport and Samlesbury Aerodrome, to Spirit. The BAE unit, which was renamed Spirit AeroSystems Ltd., is a major supplier to Raytheon , Airbus , and Boeing . The transaction was completed on April 1, 2006. Spirit paid GBP 80 million for the business.In 2010, 96% of Spirit's revenue came from its two largest customers: 85% of sales were from Boeing, 11% from Airbus. In 2009 these two customers represented 96% of sales for Spirit as well.After planning to take Spirit public, at initial public offering on November 21, 2006, the firm's stock rose 10% on the first day. Onex still owns 58% of Spirit, which results in 92% of voting power, as its shares confer "supervoting" power. The chief architect of the Onex purchase of Spirit was Nigel S. Wright, who was later Chief of Staff for the Canadian Prime Minister until his resignation as part of an expense scandal.Former House Majority Leader Richard Gephardt serves as a labor consultant for Spirit and sits on its board of directors. Wikipedia.


Grant
Agency: Cordis | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: AAT.2012.3.4-2.;AAT.2012.4.2-6. | Award Amount: 4.28M | Year: 2012

Accurate quantification of damage in aircraft structures during their life cycle through an automated monitoring system could ensure airframe integrity and long term durability. Nonlinear Elastic Wave Spectroscopy are an innovative class of non-destructive techniques providing an extreme sensitivity in diagnosing manufacturing defects such as porosity, component assembly contact conditions, and incipient damage in the form of microcracks, delaminations, clapping areas, adhesive bond weakening, which are superior to what can be obtained with traditional NDTs. Following the automated -monitoring, the next natural logical scientific step lies in the development of material with in-situ wound healing, that will move the intrinsic limiting material boundaries encountered by aerospace manufacturers. Classical healing self-healing concepts are based on the embedment of hollow-fibers/microcapsules in the resin. A new potential class of self-healing materials can be introduced by adopting thermally reversible crosslinked polymers. This new class of polymers is capable of healing internal cracks through thermo-reversible covalent bonds formation. This new approach eliminates the needs for additional ingredients such as catalyst, monomer. Moreover, these new healable resins have the built-in capability to restore mechanical properties several times through multiple cycles of healing. This allows multiple damages occurring at the same location to be repaired. The goal of this project is to develop and build an autonomous modular system for monitoring and healing aircraft structures and demonstrate its efficiency in a life-cycle simulated environment starting from the production to the in-service loading. This will be accomplished by combining integrated modular NEWS techniques and ad-hoc developed Nonlinear Imaging Methods (NIM) for smart quality control system and maintenance of aircraft structures.


An intermediate structure of an aircraft configured to mechanically attach an engine core and an engine fan module to each other and to the aircraft. The intermediate structure may have a ring-shaped portion and/or an elongated mount beam extending substantially perpendicularly from the ring-shaped portion. The ring-shaped portion may have a forward edge and an aft edge opposite of the forward edge, and may include a first attachment portion for attaching to a flange of the engine core, a second attachment portion for attaching to a flange of the engine fan module, and a mounting portion configured for mounting directly to a pylon or airframe of an aircraft. The engine core and/or the engine fan module may independently mechanically attach to and detach from the intermediate structure. The intermediate structure may have a gearbox mounted thereto for interfacing with rotary components of the engine core and the engine fan module.


Patent
Spirit Aerosystems | Date: 2014-11-02

A method of shaping a metallic honeycomb panel using a continuous drive sheet. The metallic honeycomb panel may have a perforated upper sheet, a non-perforated lower sheet, and a metal honeycomb core fixed between the upper and lower sheets. The method may include the steps of designing and manufacturing the drive sheet using finite element analysis (FEA) and criteria regarding shaping of the metallic honeycomb panel, then welding the drive sheet to the lower face of the lower sheet. The drive sheet may cover all of the lower face of the lower sheet and may have varying thicknesses determined based on the criteria and the FEA. The method may also include the steps of heating the drive sheet and metallic honeycomb panel to a creep forming or hot-stretch forming temperature and urging the metallic honeycomb panel and drive sheet into a male or female die mold to be shaped.


Patent
Spirit Aerosystems | Date: 2013-03-12

An anti-icing system for a nacelle inlet of an aircraft engine includes a spray tube for directing hot gasses toward a portion of the nacelle inlet. The spray tube includes a plurality of sections arranged such that the ends of adjacent sections are separated by a space thereby defining a thermal expansion gap between the sections. A plurality of expansion joints interconnect adjacent ends of the spray tube sections and enclose the expansion gaps. The joints allow the spray tube to expand and contract without adversely affecting the performance or structure of the spray tube. Annular sealing elements positioned in opposed axial margins of the expansion joints provide an air-tight or nearly air-tight seal between the expansion joints and the spray tube sections.


Patent
Spirit Aerosystems | Date: 2014-08-04

Embodiments of the present disclosure are directed to an epoxy shape memory copolymer by copolymerizing a mixture comprising multifunctional epoxide reagent, triglycidyl ether diluent, catalyst, and at least one aromatic alcohol curing agent of Formula I: wherein R1 and R5 are H, alkyl, aryl, or alkoxy, but not CH

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