･ New facility to meet growing demand for the engine components for short and medium range commercial aircraft manufactured at this plant, with completion scheduled for March 2024.
･ Expanded capacity will also allow incorporation of certain manufacturing processes currently contracted out to overseas manufacturers, and achieve a fully integrated manufacturing for combustors.
Tokyo, April 22, 2022 – Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI) has decided to expand Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Aero Engines, Ltd. (MHIAEL) Nagasaki Plant, an aircraft engine component factory located in MHI’s Nagasaki Shipyard & Machinery Works. Demand for engine components for short and medium range commercial aircraft manufactured at this plant is expected to increase further in the near future. The expansion will further strengthen its in-house production capacity and cost competitiveness and put in place a structure that will allow MHIAEL to meet industry needs readily and accurately once growth resumes in the post-Covid era. The expansion is scheduled for completion in March 2024.
The existing production plant manufactures combustors for the PW1100G-JM engines which powers the Airbus A320neo family. Since the start of its operations in November 2020, production has gradually increased and currently all production lines are operating near the planned capacity. The Covid-19 pandemic has caused sharp demand decrease in the aviation industry, however business relating to short and medium range commercial aircrafts used on domestic routes has been seeing a quick recovery. Aircraft flying hours of the Airbus A320neo family has already exceeded its pre-Covid level.
Airbus plans to gradually increase production of the A320neo in response to robust demand for narrow-body aircraft. Concurrently, demand for combustor components for the PW1100G-JM engines, as well as after-sales service, is expected to double over the next several years. This additional round of investment to build a second facility adjacent to the existing factory will nearly double the size of the plant, to around 11,000m2 from the current level of 5,400m2. In addition, the new facility will allow MHIAEL to incorporate certain manufacturing processes currently contracted out to overseas suppliers to achieve a fully integrated manufacturing for combustors, as well as reinforce its manufacturing facilities to support significant production ramp-up.
The MHIAEL Nagasaki Plant is a factory specialized in manufacturing combustors, which is one of core components of an aircraft engine, and the first full-fledged aircraft component factory in the Kyushu region. The plant has production lines which can handle fully integrated operations, from receipt of materials to machining and assembly. To achieve the high degree of precision and quality required for aircraft engine components, MHIAEL has introduced automation and labor-saving technologies such as cutting-edge machine tools, and automated conveyance and tool changing systems. The company also applies and utilizes IoT (Internet of Things), AI (Artificial Intelligence), and other technologies cultivated at its main mother factory in Komaki, Aichi Prefecture, to ensure an aircraft engine components factory with world-class levels of productivity and efficiency.
MHI Group, in anticipation of an increase in long-term demand for commercial aircraft engines worldwide, is expanding its business and production structure for aircraft engines, and this factory expansion plan is a part of such effort. The group is also actively working to bolster its maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) business for commercial aircraft engines and is steadily progressing to expand its MRO business portfolio at MHIAEL’s main site in Komaki.
Going forward, MHI will work in close cooperation with MHIAEL to enhance technological capabilities and reliability for the development, manufacture, and after-sales service of aircraft engines, as well as expand production capabilities, and contribute to the advancement of Japan’s aircraft industry.