Day 4 - Industry - Aerospace & Automotive
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Michael Lopez Alegria
Commercial Spaceflight Federation
Murad Hamada - Beechcraft
Director of Supply Chain Management
Commercial Human Space Flight. A New Frontier for Aerospace Business - FREE FULL VIDEO
The variously named ‘Industry Day’ or ‘Manufacturing Day’ boasted one of the most eagerly awaited guests of the whole conference, the former astronaut and president of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation, Michael López-Alegría.
López-Alegría, who has taken part in four space missions and holds three NASA records, explained that, in the very near future, commercial space trips would be not only a reality but also even a fairly common event. The first ever, private suborbital journey is due to be carried soon, at a cost of 95,000 dollars per passenger. According to López-Alegría, however, some firms are already trying out different types of commercial space trips for all walks of life: ideas range from a type of “space balloon” trip for enjoying stunning views of the earth (from a height of up to 100 kilometres) to suborbital and orbital trips. Some of these projects would already allow the spacecraft to make up to four trips a day.
According to López-Alegría, the commercial space trips sector currently employs nearly 6.000 people and this number is bound to increase in coming years. The United States is leading this race with nine cities that are already space ports and another seven who have applied to be so, but there are many countries and cities interested in becoming space ports to host launch points for these private space trips. The opening up of the commercial aerospace market will offer many advantages – and not only economic ones. It will allow the public aerospace industry to overcome its main hurdle of recent years, the sheer cost of these programmes, generating wealth and jobs, but it will also allow enhance our scientific and technological knowledge. According to López-Alegría, this will be a boon from the human point of view.
Supply Chain Opportunities; Aerospace US Industry Overview
Murad Hamada, from Beechcraft, ran the audience through the supply chain process and opportunities in an OEM in the aircraft industry, such as the company he represents. History, product lines and suppliers, giving the audience an idea on how they rank the suppliers, as well as presenting the global customer support organization, that presents opportunities for collaboration. Europe is very important for OEMs, mainly because european companies share the same value than the US and they speak the same value. The technology is in the same level on both continents and transparency is key. The FAA regulation is the main barrier for European companies working in the US, but there are specialized companies supporting and helping organizations from all over the world guiding them through all these steps, in order to overcome these barriers.
Beechcraft Corporation designs, builds and supports versatile and globally renowned aircraft, including the King Air turboprops, piston-engine Baron and Bonanza, and the T-6 trainer and AT-6 light attack military aircraft. Its 5,400 highly skilled employees are focused on continuously improving the company’s products and services which are sold to individuals, businesses and governments worldwide. In business since 1932, Beechcraft has built more than 54,000 aircraft and more than 36,000 continue flying today. It leads the industry with a global network of more than 90 factory-owned and authorized service centers. The company’s headquarters and major manufacturing facilities are located in Wichita, Kansas.