UAE's Strata inks deal to develop 3D printing technology

Aerospace manufacturing firm signs agreement with India-based Reliance Defence Limited

Strata Manufacturing, the advanced composite aero-structures manufacturing company owned by Mubadala Development Company, has signed an agreement which will look at using 3D printing technology to create aircraft parts.

The deal inked with India's Reliance Defence Limited is part of plans to collaborate on advanced aerospace manufacturing capabilities between India and the UAE.

The agreement continues to deepen the bilateral ties developed between the UAE and India at both a political and economic level, according to a statement carried by state news agency WAM.

The potential partnership, which follows extensive discussions between the two companies, will look at opportunities in the production of carbon fibre composites aerostructures, prepegs as well as 3D printing of aerospace components and airframe panels.

The Dhirubhai Ambani Aerospace Park, located at the Multi-modal International Cargo Hub and Airport at Nagpur, is being considered by Reliance for a new facility to support its aerospace ambitions, and forms part of the emerging aerospace industry in India, the statement added.

Badr Al Olama, CEO of Strata, said: "We are keen to grow our capabilities globally with Reliance and expand our operational footprint by capitalising on innovative, cost-effective solutions that can benefit our customers whilst enhancing our financial performance.

"Working together with Reliance, we see a significant opportunity that can lead to the creation of a new tier-one global supplier: designing, developing and manufacturing major aircraft components - such as wings and empennages - for the next generation of aircrafts."

Rajesh K Dhingra, president, Reliance Defence & Aerospace, added: "India’s composites industry is at a nascent stage... The project has the potential to bring in significant foreign direct investment and cutting edge technology in this niche composite aircraft manufacturing segment. 3D printing enables us to produce assembly and machining fixtures in one-quarter the time and at one-half the cost as conventional machining."

Under the memorandum of understanding, Strata and Reliance will consider new opportunities in the commercial aerospace market, address the emerging market for 3D printing of aircraft components, address obsolescence management and consider other areas of growth related to both the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030 and "Make in India" initiative.

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