The Victorian SME has been tapped by Boeing Defence to provide safety equipment for the Royal Australian Air Force’s Super Hornets and Growler aircraft, Defence Minister Linda Reynolds has announced.
Boeing Defence Australia (BDA) has awarded a $1.3 million contract to Victorian SME Air Fab.
The SME has been tasked with designing, fabricating, and supplying aircraft safety stands used in the maintenance of the Royal Australian Air Force’s F/A-18F Super Hornets and EA-18G Growler assets.
According to Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds, the safety stands would provide enhanced fall protection for Air Force and Boeing personnel when conducting maintenance on top of, and around, the aircraft.
“Using their unique manufacturing capability, Air Fab will build five sets of aircraft equipment from its facility in Ferntree Gully,” Minister Reynolds said.
“With eight employees, Air Fab is an excellent example of the ingenuity of Australian small business in helping not only keep our personnel safe, but in helping to get Australia’s frontline fighter aircraft back into the air quicker.
“I’m proud to be part of a government that unashamedly backs Australian industry and Australian workers.”
Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price noted the strength of Defence’s relationship with BDA, which has partnered with the company since 2016 for the sustainment of the Air Force’s 24 F/A-18F Super Hornet and 11 EA-18G Growler aircraft.
“BDA must be congratulated for its commitment to identifying opportunities to improve our sovereign capabilities and expand the use of Australian industry in supporting our aircraft,” Minister Price added.
“They continue to grow the number of local SMEs in their supply chain and identify new opportunities for them to contribute to the strength and success of our defence industry.”
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Federal member for Aston Alan Tudge said Air Fab’s new contract would benefit both the community and the manufacturing industry in Knox, Victoria.
“Air Fab is just another example of the amazing manufacturers that we have here in Knox,” Tudge said.
“Air Fab is a local success story. They are delivering local jobs while exporting advanced manufacturing to service a global market.
“More investment in Knox businesses is always good news for our community.”
Defence noted that Air Fab’s equipment would be manufactured in accordance with Australia’s Workplace Health & Safety standards.
News Editor – Defence and Security, Momentum Media
Prior to joining the defence and aerospace team in 2020, Charbel was news editor of The Adviser and Mortgage Business, where he covered developments in the banking and financial services sector for three years. Charbel has a keen interest in geopolitics and international relations, graduating from the University of Notre Dame with a double major in politics and journalism. Charbel has also completed internships with The Australian Department of Communications and the Arts and public relations agency Fifty Acres.