Kawasaki Celebrates Completion of New Boeing 787 Dreamliner Facility
Jul. 10, 2006
Tokyo, July 10, 2006 — Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd. held an opening ceremony today to mark the completion of a new facility adjacent to its existing Nagoya Works 1 for production of key 787 Dreamliner components, as part of a co-development program with The Boeing Company of the United States.
Construction of the new facility, to the east of the existing facility, has been under way since November 2004. The new plant has about 20,000 m2 total floor space. It is 160 m long, 95 m wide and 21 m high. Kawasaki is taking part in the development and production of the forward fuselage, the main landing gear wheel well, and the wing fixed trailing edge for the Dreamliner. Those components will be manufactured and assembled in the new facility using state-of-the-art equipment.
The 787 is a 200- to 300-seat midsize commercial airplane aiming for a high level of efficiency in operation, so a number of innovative designs - as well as cutting-edge manufacturing technology - are being applied in the airplane. The fuselage features a composite one-piece structure that is the world's first in a commercial aircraft, and requires a significantly different manufacturing process from that of existing airplanes.
Kawasaki is building an efficient production line that will enable it to realize an integrated manufacturing process, from composite parts fabrication to assembly of the forward fuselage. It is also introducing state-of-the-art equipment in the new facility, such as one of the world's largest autoclaves to cure the laid-up composite with high temperatures and pressures, an automatic fiber placement machine to co-cure the composite fuselage, and a panel-fastening machine to automatically rivet frames to the fuselage.
Development of the 787 Dreamliner is in its final stages, with entry into service planned for 2008. Kawasaki is scheduled to deliver the initial forward fuselage from its new facility in early 2007. The Company is committed to providing high-quality products from the new facility to the Boeing program, and to actively contributing to the development of the commercial aircraft business.
Overview of the New Facility