UTC Aerospace Systems celebrates Wolverhampton investments

New machines will enable the facility to improve its output and efficiency


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The Investment was used to purchase several new machines, like the Samputensili grinder. The company made the announcement at a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by the Mayor of Wolverhampton during National Apprenticeship Week. The event highlighted the company’s investment in the site and dedication to developing the future pipeline of engineering talent.

“This investment gives our employees the opportunity to operate the latest technology,” said Head of Machining Wayne Jones. “It shows our commitment to being at the forefront of the aerospace industry, and enables us to meet our growing customer demand and increase revenue for the business.”

During his visit, Mayor Findlay had the opportunity to see some of the company apprentices’ work, which they were keen to showcase as part of National Apprenticeship Week. Matthew Smith, an operations apprentice, was on hand to highlight the site’s latest technology by displaying one of his design models that had been produced on a 3D printer.

Matthew said of his role: “I enjoy overcoming the challenges I face, and learning new things along the way.”

Lynda Harper, Actuation Systems Learning and Development & Talent Development Lead highlighted the importance of apprenticeship programs.

“Actuation Systems offers young people an opportunity to explore early career options so they have a chance to start matching up their passions and their talents with a career,” Harper said. “Apprenticeships offer the best of both worlds as young people gain educational knowledge from college and hands-on experience too.”

Mayor Findlay’s visit concluded with a factory tour and an overview of the entire engineering process at the Wolverhampton site. General Manager Robert Hupfer said he was proud to show the facility to the Mayor.

I believe in investing in the future and to me that means both machinery, and of course our greatest asset – our people,” Hupfer said. “Our apprentices provide us with a fresh approach in the workplace, and in return we offer them the chance to develop their career at a forward-thinking company which provides high-precision engineering for the modern aerospace industry.”

Express and Star Coverage

According to local newspaper The Express and Star . . .

The firm is gearing up for work on some of the world’s biggest aircraft contracts and the factory’s boss says he is trying to recruit as much young Black Country engineering talent as possible to handle a growing workload in the coming years.

Robert Hupfer, general manager at the Stafford Road Actuation Systems factory of UTC Aerospace Systems, said: “We took on 26 new apprentices last year but I’d like 40 starting every year.

“We are spending millions of pounds every year on new machinery but we need the new young talent to operate it in the future.

"We are now operating 24-hours a day, seven-days a week, every day – including Christmas – producing 4,500 parts units every month.

“Our workforce is now up to around 1,500, including around 300 agency workers.

"It’s a very exciting time to be here. Our apprentices give us the competitive advantage we need here as we look to the future.”

As production of the new F-35 Joint Strike Fighter increases, the Stafford Road factory is making vital components for its weapons, bay doors and other control systems.

The factory, which now employs 1,500 people, is also making flight control components for a fleet of passenger aircraft projects around the world, for Airbus, Boeing, and Japanese and Russian plane makers.

Wolverhampton Mayor Barry Findlay met apprentices and senior managers during a visit to formally cut the ribbon on the latest hi-tech production line.

And he spoke to the young trainees about his own electrical apprenticeship at Alstom’s train maintenance operation at Oxley, where he is now the continuous improvement manager.

“I started out as an apprentice and now I am mayor of this city,” he told them. “You can go anywhere.”

UTC Aerospace Systems investment March 2017  

The Mayor chats with head of machining Wayne Jones and leading manufacturer Matthew Thomas

 

Mr Findlay also took a look at the newly purchased machines, including a computer-controlled Samputensili grinder, that will enable the facility to improve its output and efficiency

“This investment gives our employees the opportunity to operate the latest technology,” said head of machining Wayne Jones.

“It shows our commitment to being at the forefront of the aerospace industry, and enables us to meet our growing customer demand and increase revenue for the business.”

During his visit, Mr Findlay had the opportunity to see some of the company apprentices’ work, which they were keen to showcase as part of National Apprenticeship Week.

About UTC Aerospace Systems

UTC Aerospace Systems is one of the world’s largest suppliers of technologically advanced aerospace and defense products. UTC Aerospace Systems designs, manufactures and services integrated systems and components for the aerospace and defense industries, supporting a global customer base with significant worldwide manufacturing and customer service facilities. For more information about the company, visit our website at www.utcaerospacesystems.com or follow us on Twitter: @utcaerosystems

About United Technologies Corporation

United Technologies Corp., based in Farmington, Connecticut, provides high-technology systems and services to the building and aerospace industries. By combining a passion for science with precision engineering, the company is creating smart, sustainable solutions the world needs. For more information about the company, visit our website at www.utc.com or follow us on Twitter: @UTC