New Bell 505 Jet Ranger X prototype manufacturing
Flexibility & Capabilities, offering most efficient solution
In 2014 Bell Helicopter identified Aernnova as the preferred supplier for the manufacturing of first prototypes of the cabin, tailcone and horizontal stabilizer; considering the high vertical integration capabilities on detail part manufacturing and aerostructure assembly, in addition to Project & Supply Chain Management and important experience in a number of programs for a wide variety of platforms.
This project meant to Aernnova and its subsidiary in México, a great challenge and unique opportunity to demonstrate their skills to a new customer, from the initial stages of the industrialization with the development and management of flight prototypes, a time characterized by the constant design changes to be addressed.
- “Build to print” a total of 3 prototypes (FTV’s, Flight Test Vehicles).
- The scope of work (SOW) grew at the same time the prototypes were manufactured and assembled implying going from 145 pieces to over 350, eventually covering the entire metal structure of the helicopter.
- Incorporate continuous design changes along with the detail part manufacturing and prototype structure assembly.
- Manage the purchase of parts from Bell designated suppliers for specific structures.
- Manage the development of tooling from design to manufacturing.
- High and close coordination between the two Aernnova’s aerostructures and components manufacturing facilities in Mexico to efficiently manage design changes in less time.
- Comply with the customer’s specific quality requirements, in both detail parts manufacturing and aerostructures assembly.
- A multidisciplinary team was established between Bell Helicopter and Aernnova, led by its subsidiary in Mexico and integrating metal components manufacturing facility.
- Aernnova took advantage of concurrent engineering phase to provide and apply some design suggestions for the manufacturing of parts and aerostructures assembly.
- Assembly tools design and manufacturing was managed for the entire cabin and the horizontal stabilizer, parallel to the growing scope of work and the fuselage assembly work.
- An Assembly Plan was developed which included specialized teams in prototype assembly brought from Spain, providing added value to the project and customer.
This project showed one of the greatest strengths of Aernnova in Mexico: The high vertical integration to manufacture metal parts, manage all the supply chain and delivering the complete assembly of the helicopter structure.
Additionally, the successful delivery of all prototypes will continue in the coming months with the start of the serial manufacturing, which illustrates the customer satisfaction achieved regarding Aernnova’s performance up to date and the capacities & capabilities, delivered also from Mexico, as a long-term reliable partner.