Transferable skillset positions TAE for JSF maintenance contract

Transferable skillset positions TAE for JSF maintenance contract

TAE chief executive Andrew Sanderson has flagged how a strategy to build and enhance the firm’s engineering and maintenance skills has seen it winning key contracts – with the Joint Strike Fighter maintenance deal just around the corner.

Sanderson told Defence Connect’s Phillip Tarrant that a concerted effort to bolster the company’s type-specific training initiatives had been crucial in this process.

He said that once a maintenance team possessed the hand skills to look after a turbine engine – which spin around 16,000 rpm – the tolerances remain the same.

“The tank engine spins at 43,000 rpm,” Sanderson added.

“[But] the way you build them is all the same. It's just knowing sizes and scales … as applied to a particular engine type.

“So we can certainly leverage the experience we had ... into the Hornets, into the tanks and Super Hornets. And what's exciting in 18 month's time is [we’ll apply that to] the engine of the Joint Strike Fighter as well.”

Finally, the TAE CEO said the company had been awarded the maintenance contract for the Joint Strike Fighter engine – the F-35 – for the next 20-40 years.

“For the whole of Asia-Pacific, so that’s Japan, Korea and Australia and also the US forces in the region,” Sanderson said. “So our first work we anticipate coming from the US Marine Corps out of Okinawa in Japan.”

Transferable skillset positions TAE for JSF maintenance contract
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