Saab has opened a new plant in West Lafayette, Indiana, and the new site will be the domestic production site for Saab’s rear airframe sections for the T-7A Red Hawk.
In addition, the facility will support research and development in the areas of autonomy, artificial intelligence and advanced manufacturing.
âThis opening marks a historic moment for Saab. This high-tech facility and its growing workforce are the result of Saab’s continued investment in the United States. Just as the T-7A Red Hawk will train the next generation of fighter and bomber pilots, we look forward to welcoming and training the next generation of aerospace engineers and other skilled employees, âsaid the President and Saab Group CEO Micael Johansson. âAs a trusted local partner, Saab is committed to investing both in our community of West Lafayette and in research and development for a more sustainable world to protect people and society. “
The Boeing-Saab team produces the new advanced trainer for the US Air Force, with Saab supplying the rear section of the Boeing front fuselage. Currently, the rear section is built at the Saab plant in LinkÃ¶ping, Sweden and then shipped to the United States.
âI’m inspired by the Boeing-Saab team’s accomplishments with the T-7A Red Hawk – bringing together the best of digital design and production innovation to build this incredible trainer,â said Leanne Caret, President and CEO of Boeing Defense, Space & Security. âOur modern T-7A Red Hawk production lines enable us to provide our customers with the most digitally advanced solutions, produced simply, efficiently and intelligently, and we are honored to team up with Saab to make this possible. “
Since the inception of the T-7A, Boeing and Saab have continued to research and develop new program efficiencies.
âOur teams will no longer have to deal with long transatlantic sailing schedules,â said Steve Parker, Boeing Bombers & Fighters, vice president and general manager. âThe digital features of this trainer not only allow adaptive growth of future releases, but also dramatically improve quality over traditional design and manufacturing methods. “
The T-7A Red Hawk went from concept to first flight in just 36 months using advanced model-based engineering and digital design techniques. The digital wire, the connection of digital information through product design, manufacture and inspection, used throughout the program has contributed to a 75% improvement in engineering quality.
In September 2018, the US Air Force awarded Boeing a $ 9.2 billion contract to supply 351 advanced training aircraft and 46 associated ground training simulators.
The T-7A Red Hawk was named as an ode to the Tuskegee Airmen, the first African-American military aviators in the US Army Air Corps, which eventually became the US Air Force. During World War II, these aviators frequently painted their planes a red-tailed color palette, and the T-7A was officially named Red Hawk in their honor.