In a major boost to the “make in India” programme, US aircraft engine major GE Aerospace has extended its manufacturing agreement with Tata Advanced Systems Ltd (TASL) for aircraft engine components under a multi-year contract valued at over $1 billion. Commercial aircraft engine parts on a larger scale will now be made the Tata Centre of Excellence for Aero Engines in Hyderabad and shipped to GE’s global engine manufacturing factories.
The Tata Centre of Excellence for Aero Engines was established in 2018 to manufacture CFM International LEAP engine components in India. This is an option for airlines using the best-selling Airbus A320neo, with LEAP engines competing with Pratt & Whitney. IndiGo, the world’s ;largest A320 customer, has so far ordered hundreds of engines from both the companies. LEAP is the only engine used on the Boeing 737 MAX, that are currently in the fleets of SpiceJet and Akasa Air.
Disruption of supply chain — that started with Covid in early 2020 and could not ease as China still remain largely closed — has led to massive delays in engine/component deliveries to both Airbus and airlines. Companies globally are looking for alternate supply centres to avoid reliance on one country — commonly known as ABC or anything but China or China plus one — to avoid future supply chain shocks. India is positioning itself as the alternate under its ambitious “make in India” programme.
TASL MD & CEO Sukaran Singh said: “TASL has evolved as the supplier of choice for global aerospace and defence industry. We continue to invest in growing the aerospace skill base, technology, and production capability in the country. The Tata Centre of Excellence for Aero Engines has been set up as the state-of-the-art modern shop for complex aero-engine manufacturing for global customers. As a leading commercial engine manufacturer, GE has helped us develop critical aero-engine manufacturing processes here in India with support from GE’s engineering team.”
Mike Kauffman, GE Aerospace VP & GM (purchasing),said: “Our relationship with TASL has matured over the last five years. The Tata Centre of Excellence for Aero Engines has grown in scale and importance for us over time and is an excellent showcase of Make in India, for the world.”
The Hyderabad-based Tata Centre of Excellence for Aero Engines specialises in advanced, precision-machining technologies for aircraft engine manufacturing, including special process technologies like thermal spray, electron beam welding and X-ray radiography.
GE has been operating in India for 120 years. It currently has 19,000 employees here. GE runs 14 own or joint venture manufacturing units in the country. Its aviation footprint in India includes military aviation equipment, commercial aviation engines, marine operations, avionics, maintenance, product development, research and local manufacturing.
TASL is a wholly owned subsidiary of Tata Sons, focused on providing integrated solutions for aerospace, defence and homeland security. It has capabilities throughout the entire aerospace value chain from design to full aircraft assembly.
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