Journey of the Osprey

Frontiers November 2015 Issue

Journey Behind the scenes: Final assembly of Bell Boeing V-22 Ospreys at Bell Helicopter in Texas BY STEPHANIE WEINER | PHOTOS BY FRED TROILO It’s early morning when a truck rolls out of the Boeing factory in Philadelphia, bound for the Texas Panhandle and transporting what looks like a giant cocoon. Inside that cocoon is a V-22 Osprey fuselage. It’s a journey that each Osprey takes before it becomes a fully assembled aircraft, ready for flight, at the Bell Helicopter factory in Amarillo, Texas. The transformation begins at Boeing’s Ridley Township site near the banks of the Delaware River in Pennsylvania, where employees assemble the fuselage and equip it with avionics, electrical wiring and hydraulic tubing. From there, the Osprey’s first mission is a three-day, 1,600-mile (2,600-kilometer) road trip. Arriving at Bell Helicopter near the Amarillo airport, the Osprey continues to develop with the addition of wings, empennage and rotors. The V-22 is manufactured under a 50-50 alliance between Bell Helicopter and Boeing. In Amarillo, nine Boeing employees work side by side with the Bell team. “We’re on the front lines of the of the Osprey 48 BOEING FRONTIERS


Frontiers November 2015 Issue
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