Jul 20, 2012
Local aeroengine company set for production boost in coming yearsBack
Aviation|Africa|Components|Defence|Denel|Engines|Gearboxes|General Electric|Industrial|Rolls-Royce|Safran|Turbomeca Africa|Africa|France|South Africa|United States|Equipment|Industrial|Maintenance|Manufacturing|Manufacturing Output|Steel|Olivier Andriès|Power|A320|Eurocopter Super Puma|Puma
© Reuse this
The local company, 51%-owned by Turbomeca (itself part of French group Safran) and 49% by South African State-owned defence industrial group Denel, is busy industrialising parts for the CFM International Leading Edge Aviation Propulsion (better known as Leap) engine. The Leap is one of the powerplant options for the latest version of Airbus’ best-selling A320 single-aisle airliner family, the A320Neo (Neo standing for New Engine Option). CFM International is a 50:50 joint venture between Snecma, of France (also a part of the Safran group), and General Electric Aviation, of the US.
“The parts for the Leap are gears for the gearbox,” explained Andriès. “The main competence for TMA is in relation to gearboxes and gears, which is a competence you don’t find in many places. They are very complex parts. TMA is part of our [global] gearbox industrial strategy.” Nor is this all. “Rolls-Royce is also considering adding new parts for [production by] Turbomeca Africa,” he reported.
Andriès was in South Africa to help celebrate the tenth anniversary of the creation of Turbomeca Africa. “I have visited many Turbomeca sites around the world and I can confirm, with pleasure, that Turbomeca Africa is a benchmark,” he said in his speech at the anniversary function.
TMA both manufactures parts for, and under- takes the maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) of, aeroengines. The company produces parts for the Turbomeca Arriel, Arrius and Makila helicopter engines and for Rolls-Royce Tay engines for Gulfstream business jets. Indeed, Rolls-Royce is TMA’s biggest single customer.
The local company undertakes MRO of Turbomeca Arrius, Makila and Tumo engines. The Tumo powers the Eurocopter Puma helicopter, while the Makila powers the Eurocopter Super Puma/Cougar helicopter family, the Denel Oryx and Denel Rooivalk helicopters of the South African Air Force (SAAF) and will power upgraded Pumas of the UK Royal Air Force. Various versions of the Arrius power Eurocopter EC 120 and EC 135 helicopters, the Russian Kamov Ka-226T helicopter and provide one of the powerplant options for the AgustaWestland A109 helicopter. SAAF A109s are powered by the Arrius.
Some 90% of the engines which undergo MRO at TMA come from outside South Africa. They come from all over the world. The local facility is one of only two in the world authorised to work on the Tumo engine, the other being in France. In fact, the French Defence Ministry is one of TMA’s MRO clients. Moreover, the South African plant is one of only three in the world authorised to work on Turbomeca engine fuel control units – very complex and essential components. The other two are Turbomeca itself, in France, and Turbomeca USA.
TMA’s MRO capacity is about 200 engines a year. When it was set up in 2002, its MRO business amounted to about 40 engines a year. Work peaked in 2008, with 194 engines. Then the global recession hit, and work dropped to 136 engines in 2009 and 131 in 2010, but recovered to 183 last year. The company’s target for this year is about 190 engines.
Heat treatment and surface treatment processes are integral to the work of TMA, so the company, which had previously outsourced these activities to Denel (mainly to nearby Denel Aerostructures – DAe), decided to bring them in-house. Last year, TMA invested R50-million in doing so – R15-million for heat treatment and R35-million for surface treatment equipment. Most of this was bought off DAe, because DAe works mainly with aluminium and only makes limited use of such capabilities. Now, when DAe needs steel heat and/or surface treatment, TMA does it for them and, in return, DAe does whatever aluminium work TMA requires.
Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other News This Week News
Article contains comments
Updated 2 hours 13 minutes ago South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) group corporate services executive Ambassador Xolisa Mabhongo stressed on Thursday that South Africa currently had only one Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for electricity, the IRP 2010, and that the IRP Update...
Updated 3 hours ago South Africans needed to become more entrepreneurial and create their own jobs, instead of expecting government to create jobs or rely on private-sector employment. “We need to become masters of our own destinies,” Small Business Development Deputy Minister Elizabeth...
Updated 3 hours ago Plans to increase gross domestic expenditure on research and development (GERD) to 1.5% of gross domestic product by 2019 are yet to be formally adopted, despite the target being incorporated in the draft strategic plan of the Department of Science and Technology...
Recent Research Reports
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
This Week's Magazine
Integrated energy and chemical company Sasol has partnered with Unisa Graduate School of Business Leadership (SBL) professor and founder and CEO of PanAvest Partnership Dr Douglas Boateng to publish a series of books on executive supply chain management aimed at...
The World Wide Fund for Nature’s (WWF’s) 2014 Living Planet Index (LPI) indicates that there has been a 52% decline in vertebrate species since 1970. The Index tracked the trends of 10 000 discrete populations of over 3000 vertebrate species between 1970 and 2010.
Rwanda has joined a number of East African countries seeking to import electricity from Ethiopia as its demand grows. After it became apparent several generation project it is implementing will not come on stream early enough, now plans to import 400 MW from Ethiopia...
Metrorail’s first new passenger train will arrive in November next year, says Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) CEO Lucky Montana. “Next year we will be able to put our hands around the infrastructure and equipment we have been talking about for so long.”
The Competition Commission has launched an investigation into what it says are “price fixing, market division and collusive tendering in the market for the manufacture and supply of automotive components to original equipment manufacturers” (OEMs, or vehicle...