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Pratt & Whitney announced on 22 October it plans to invest “at least $650 million” (€551 million) through 2027 in “a world-class turbine airfoil production facility” in Asheville, NC.

The new, 1,000,000-square-foot facility will house an advanced casting foundry for the production of turbine airfoils, as well as conduct machining, coating and finishing of airfoils onsite. “This investment will enable Pratt & Whitney to continue to modernise and transform its operations with cutting-edge technologies," stated Chris Calio, the company’s President. “Turbine airfoils are a critical component across our engine portfolio and demand will increase significantly as the market recovers over the next several years. We need to invest today to ensure that we have the infrastructure, production capabilities and workforce in place to meet future market demand and provide the best products to our customers worldwide.”

The investment is intended to create 800 new jobs through 2027 at the facility, which will implement best-in-class manufacturing technologies and processes exemplifying industry 4.0 manufacturing principles, and will complement existing turbine airfoil work conducted across Pratt & Whitney’s facilities. This investment directly supports Pratt & Whitney’s goal to transform its business and strengthen its position by implementing modern solutions to prepare for the future, while reducing structural costs to emerge from the pandemic stronger.

We are positioning North Carolina to come out of this pandemic with these and other good paying jobs which signals a bright future in aviation even with the current challenges the industry faces,” commented North Carolina Governor, Roy Cooper.

Production, finishing, inspection and testing of airfoils are critical components of successfully addressing the challenges the aerospace industry must face as the community recovers over the next several years. (Photo: blog.nikonmetrology.com)

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