Boeing manufacturing research programme takes off in Scotland

Boeing NMIS 15092020
Boeing NMIS 15092020

The National Manufacturing Institute Scotland (NMIS) in Renfrew has announced a new facility for its £11.8 million R&D programme with Boeing.

The National Manufacturing Institute Scotland (NMIS) in Renfrew has announced a new facility for its £11.8 million R&D programme with Boeing.

NMIS is part of the Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District Scotland.

The 60,000ft2 space will be refurbished to accommodate the personnel and equipment needed for the Boeing programme. It will also house other advanced engineering equipment to be used in projects with other manufacturing businesses, including a purpose-built area dedicated to advancing the use of additive manufacturing in Scotland.

The Boeing programme, run by the University of Strathclyde’s Advanced Forming Research Centre (AFRC), part of the National Manufacturing Institute Scotland and the only High Value Manufacturing Catapult centre in Scotland, will see the company establish an R&D team at the Westway facility working with AFRC’s leading forming and forging technologists.

Related: Boeing plans to boost supply chain in Scotland


Boeing has hired a team to work on the programme and it is expected that the personnel will be on site later this year.

The programme will demonstrate innovative manufacturing processes and technologies related to metallic components, building upon research previously conducted at the AFRC. Through these technologies and building capability in others, the team will be investigating reducing material wastage, possibilities to improve safety, productivity and environmental impact.

The programme comes as the result of the University of Strathclyde and the AFRC building a successful relationship with Boeing over a number of decades, with the aerospace giant being one of the founding members of the specialist technology centre.

This is one of the initial actions to come from the Boeing Scotland Alliance, which was set up between the two organisations to explore opportunities to work together in Scotland, with the aim of doubling Boeing’s supply chain in the country.

This could be worth tens of millions of pounds to the Scottish economy and could see 200 new quality jobs created over the next five years.

Related: UK aerospace industry is top for investment in Europe


Speaking about the new facility, John Reid, the new CEO of the National Manufacturing Institute Scotland, said: “This facility is a significant step not only in the development of the National Manufacturing Institute Scotland, but also in bolstering the future of manufacturing across the country post lockdown.

“We are delighted to be bringing Boeing to Scotland at this time to work on such a critical project with our team and play a crucial role in developing the aerospace supply chain across the country for generations to come.

Sir Martin Donnelly, president of Boeing Europe and Managing Director of Boeing in the UK and Ireland, added: “We announced our broader Boeing Scotland Alliance with Scottish Enterprise in March at the AFRC because this R&D programme was a cornerstone of that agreement. Seeing such progress with the signing of this lease amid the challenges of 2020 is a testament to the teams involved and a precursor of what we know we will achieve through the talent and resources found in the Glasgow City Region and throughout Scotland.”

NMIS www.nmis.scot

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