Airbus have announced the acquisition of MTM Robotics, the industrial automation company, for an undisclosed sum. Airbus expressed the hope that the acquisition will allow it to strengthen the automation of its manufacturing line. It is an acquisition that will also help Airbus to expand its advanced robotics capabilities into its manufacturing processes.
Although MTM will operate as a subsidiary of Airbus Americas, the company will continue to serve its other aerospace customers and will maintain its facilities in Mukilteo, not far from Seattle, as well as its 40-person staff.
Over 40 aerospace manufacturing systems have been deployed by MTM since 2003. These systems include tools, machines, machine and enterprise software as well as providing technical support in the Middle East, Europe, Asia and the United States.
The acquisition of MTM Robotics is the final step in the Airbus industrialization roadmap. The company’s industrialization strategy aims to take advantage of the economic and time advantages linked to the use of robotics in the assembly and manufacture of its commercial aircraft.
According to Michael Schoellhorn, Airbus chief operating officer, tomorrow’s competitiveness will be determined both by building the most efficient manufacturing system and by designing the best aircraft.
In terms of innovative manufacturing and engineering solutions, MTM dovetails perfectly with Airbus’ ambition, stated Airbus industrial technology manager Patrick Vigié. Vigié added that both companies believed that in terms of aircraft manufacturing, automation can and should be more portable, lighter and less capital intensive.
Vigié concluded by saying that the combination of their skills and efforts should allow them to deliver the factory of tomorrow capable of setting standards for the industry.