Invest NI helps local aerospace collaboration develop world leading prototype

A local aerospace collaboration will launch revolutionary new technology to the global aerospace industry at the prestigious Paris Air Show this week (19-26 June).

Supported by Invest Northern Ireland, Belfast-based Lenis Aer, a spin-out company from the University of Ulster, and the university’s Advanced Metal Forming Research Group, developed the technology to manufacture more fuel efficient components for engine enclosures or nacelles.

The technology can help reduce fuel usage by up to five per cent and reduce environmental impact. A prototype manufactured in conjunction with Newtownards-based Crossen Engineering, will be revealed on the Invest NI stand at the event in Paris.

Invest NI has offered the University of Ulster over £100,000, part funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), towards the research, development and commercialisation of the new technology.

Tracy Meharg, Invest NI’s Managing Director of Innovation and Capability Development, said: “The Paris Air Show provides a platform to promote local aerospace knowledge and skills to an international audience. This collaboration has successfully developed a product with significant commercial potential in a major global sector. Using research and development has enabled the individual organisations involved to collectively enhance their world leading capabilities and make a positive contribution to the local economy.”

Edel O’Neill of the University of Ulster and Director of Lenis Aer, said: “The expertise, skills and knowledge used to develop this technology are unique to Northern Ireland and Invest NI’s support has been essential in bringing the concept to fruition so quickly.

“Participating in the Paris Air Show provides an important opportunity to attract potential customers and secure supply chain opportunities with the world’s leading aviation firms. In the months ahead, we will continue to work with Crossen Engineering to further boost awareness of this new technology and promote its benefits to the aerospace industry.”

Taking place at Le Bourget exhibition centre from 20 to 26 June 2011, the 49th Paris Air Show is an opportunity for global businesses in the sector to showcase the latest technological innovations. Invest NI’s stand is located in Hall 2B, Stand GH183.

Five other local companies are also exhibiting on the Invest NI stand: John Huddleston Engineering, Greyabbey; Moyola Precision Engineering, Magherafelt; Survitec, Dunmurry; Bombardier Aerospace, Belfast; and Williams Industrial Services, Newtownabbey.

Representatives from Queens University Belfast and the University of Ulster will also be in attendance. Northern Ireland expertise is being displayed on several other stands including Bombardier Aerospace, Thales, and RLC Engineering Group.