GKN Aerospace to create center of excellence in Fort Worth

Published on November 21, 2022

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GKN Aerospace will relocate its North America additive manufacturing center of excellence to the Lone Star Commerce Center in Fort Worth. The move will strengthen its position as an additive technology leader with a larger facility, plans for an additional larger additive manufacturing cell, and increased collaboration in the aerospace ecosystem.

The 100,000-square-foot facility will initially house research and development of laser metal deposition with wire additive manufacturing technology for large-scale titanium aerostructures.

Early in 2023, GKN Aerospace will transfer existing equipment and personnel from Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Manufacturing Demonstration Facility in Tennessee to the new site in Fort Worth. Over the next few years, GKN Aerospace expects to transform the facility into its fourth Global Technology Center to complement existing centers in Sweden, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.

Shawn Black, GKN Aerospace’s president of defense, said: “We are very excited to bring our additive technology research to Fort Worth. With proximity to many of our major customers in Texas and across the U.S., this is the right place for GKN Aerospace. Along with partnership with local government, we look forward to expanding our titanium additive manufacturing capabilities and pushing the boundaries of this technology for our customers and the aerospace industry.”

GKN Aerospace will renovate the Fort Worth facility with office space and equipment over the next two years, while the City of Fort Worth will provide grant funding based on qualified R&D investment. When at full capacity, the center will support up to 100 personnel.

Robert Sturns, director of the Economic Development Department for the City of Fort Worth, said: “Fort Worth is proud to welcome GKN Aerospace and excited by the cutting-edge R&D that it will bring to the region. This center of excellence builds on a strong cluster of Fort Worth-based firms who are innovating the future of aerospace and transportation manufacturing, and we look forward to the partnership that we are building with GKN Aerospace.”

Chris Strayer, executive vice president of economic development for the Fort Worth Chamber, said: “The Fort Worth Chamber is proud to welcome GKN Aerospace to Fort Worth. We were able to coordinate real estate, infrastructure, workforce and incentives with all our community partners, creating a world-class experience for the newest member of the Fort Worth business community.” 

GKN Aerospace is already a world leader in laser metal deposition with wire technology, with decades of experience in advanced aero-engine component development and large aerostructure expertise. Additive manufacturing components are currently flying on platforms across the civil, engines and space markets. It recently achieved a milestone by completing its largest titanium additive manufacturing demonstration part to date, with the production of a component measuring 8 feet and processed from approximately 100 pounds of titanium wire.



Photo: GKN Aerospace will eventually hire 100 employees at its facility at Lone Star Commerce Center in Fort Worth.



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