New Manufacturing for Adelaide
17 Jan 12
BAE Systems is to introduce new hi-tech manufacturing technology to allow for the production of vertical tail fins for JSF jets.
BAE Systems and the South Australian Government have announced that new advanced manufacturing technology will be installed at BAE's Adelaide manufacturing facility to produce tail fins for up to 3000 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) jets. Reportedly the technology, upon which little detail has been released, will herald the start of Australia's largest titanium, aerospace operation.
It has been said that the technology potentially has other applications such as Boeing's Dreamliner aircraft and future fighter jets and BAE Systems will go to the global market in an attempt to win global airline and military contracts for the technology. Installation of the technology is said to be taking place over the next 12 months.
BAE chief executive David Allot has indicated that the investment would initially create 22 new jobs at the Edinburgh site and 60 at AMTIL Member, Rosebank Engineering, which will treat and finish the parts.
Defence Industries Minister Jack Snelling has refused to reveal how much taxpayer involvement is associated with the project but has said that "the future for manufacturing in South Australia has got to be this leading edge stuff, advanced manufacturing is where we can compete with the rest of the world."
This project clearly shows that the future of Australian manufacturing is reliant on innovation and cutting edge technology, however we have long stated that such innovation requires investment and the Australian Government, unlike other international Government's, offers little incentive for Australia's manufacturers to invest in new technologies. Many other countries offer their manufacturers incentives to invest in manufacturing technology such as accelerated depreciation schemes and other tax incentives.
Clearly the project that is the subject of this article has government support, but if manufacturers at large were offered more incentive to invest in new manufacturing technologies not only would they be better equipped to compete in the global arena, but the sky could be the limit with Australia's manufacturing and engineering prowess so highly regarded throughout the world.
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