Chief Technology Officer Discusses New Manufacturing Technologies Enhancing Aircraft Gas Turbine Engine Performance


Dr. Bob Fagan, Chief Technology Officer at the Commonwealth Center for Advanced Manufacturing (CCAM), today addressed attendees of the International Manufacturing Technology Show 2014 in Chicago with a presentation, “Engine Performance Driving Manufacturing Excellence.”

“Advanced manufacturing technologies are leading to a renaissance in the manufacturing economy, particularly in the U.S. and Europe,” Fagan said.  “This includes two key areas – digital or smart manufacturing and the evolution of additive manufacturing.  Both continue to have a significant impact on the manufacture of aircraft gas turbine engines.”

Digital manufacturing addresses the IT infrastructure (hardware and software) required to access all critical data throughout the lifecycle of the part.  In addition to design, analysis, and manufacturing execution data, this also includes quality and business process information.

Additive manufacturing addresses an emerging generation of technologies which more directly produce parts from their digital definition with processes that “build” the structure. The potential of such processes in both the traditional and non-traditional factory are significant.

Fagan was a long-time aerospace industry engineering leader at Pratt & Whitney and other manufacturers before joining CCAM in 2014 as the center’s top research scientist.

CCAM is based at a 62,000 square foot applied research facility that has computational and engineering research labs, high bay production space and commercial scale equipment, and specialized equipment and tooling for research in surface engineering, manufacturing systems, additive manufacturing, machining technologies, composite materials processing, and welding and joining.

The center bridges the gap between research and commercialization, accelerating new developments to market.

CCAM’s 21 industry and government members include Aerojet Rocketdyne, Airbus, Canon Virginia Inc., Chromalloy, Newport News Shipbuilding, Oerlikon Metco, Rolls-Royce, Sandvik Coromant, Siemens,  Blaser Swisslube, EOS, Hermle Machine Co., Mitutoyo, Paradigm Precision, Buehler, Cool Clean Technologies, GF AgieCharmilles, Mechdyne, National Instruments, SIS and the NASA Langley Research Center.

Academic partners are the University of Virginia, Virginia State University, Virginia Tech and Old Dominion University.




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