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Frontiers December 2013—January 2014 Issue

BOEING FRONTIERS / DECEMBER 2013–JANUARY 2014 43 parts for Boeing’s twin-aisle airplanes. Kawasaki produces the 787 mid-forward fuselage, the 787 main landing gear wheel well and the 787 fixed trailing edges for the wings, as well as structural parts for other models. Mitsubishi was the first Boeing supplier partner to build the wings of a Boeing commercial jetliner. “What is very evident in Japan is the partnership and the depth of relationships,” Hill said. “The Heavies clearly repre-sent that in terms of a willingness to invest and partner with Boeing. Anybody who’s been to Nagoya and witnessed what the Heavies have invested in facilities and tools sees that it really is a partnership, not simply a supply relationship.” Over the years, Mitsubishi has manufactured 200 F-15J jet fighters and Kawasaki has produced about 100 Chinook rotorcraft for the Japan Self-Defense Forces, both under license agreements with Boeing. The company is working with Mitsubishi on a potential upgrade to the F-15 fighters with modernized features. And as a sign of how Boeing and the three Heavies are investing in their future, the companies are among the founders of the Tokyo-based Consortium for Manufacturing Innovation. The goal of the consortium, which was founded in April 2013, is to research manufacturing technologies that will benefit Boeing and eventually companies in other industries. Boeing and Japanese partners also are teaming in smaller but fast-growing sectors. Boeing subsidiary Insitu Pacific recently partnered with Mitsubishi to provide a ScanEagle unmanned aircraft system for the Japanese Ground Self-Defense Force for disaster recovery and other missions. In the realm of cybersecurity, Boeing and Sojitz Corp. established a partnership in 2012 to offer advanced cybersecurity solutions in Japan to help protect critical government, civil and commercial information technology infrastructure. Boeing Japan President George Maffeo said these companies have a “quality first” approach that fits perfectly with Boeing’s culture. “That’s one of the reasons the partnership is so great,” he said. n


Frontiers December 2013—January 2014 Issue
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