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日本志在扩大飞机制造能力 (Japan Growing Aircraft-Making Capabilities)

Credit: METI

日本政府正在促进本地工业与波音公司之间在飞机电气化和高速率复合材料制造方面的技术合作。此举在于扩大日本长久以来在飞机制造业中发挥的有限作用。

The Japanese government is promoting technological cooperation between local industry and Boeing in aircraft electrification and high-rate composites manufacturing, aiming at expanding the country’s traditionally limited roles in aircraft manufacturing.

在注意到波音公司早前关注的项目后,日本经济产业省正在帮助两个电动技术应用提案筹措资金,针对近在眼前的这一明显机会,使用作动系统替代推进系统。

Noting projects in which Boeing has taken an early interest, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry is helping to fund two proposals in the application of electric technology, with actuation rather than propulsion the obvious near-term opportunity.

波音和日本公司正在根据美国制造商与经济产业省于一月份签署的协议探索各种可能性。经济产业省还与空客公司(Airbus)合作,期望寻找合适的方式,利用日本技术加大其在飞机制造领域的参与度。

Boeing and Japanese companies are exploring possibilities under an agreement between the U.S. manufacturer and the ministry signed in January. The ministry is also working with Airbus in looking for ways in which Japan’s technologies can be used to deepen its involvement in making aircraft.

经济产业省航天与国防工业课负责人畑田浩之指出,日本工业在制造飞机结构和发动机零件方面已有数十年历史。但是,在很大程度上,它一直无法对外国机载系统制造商构成挑战,因为这些公司已经巩固其行业地位,并享受规模化生产的低成本优势。

Japanese industry has for decades had a strong presence in making aircraft structures and engine parts, noted the director of the ministry’s aerospace and defense industry division, Hiroyuki Hatada. But it has been largely unable to challenge foreign makers of onboard systems, companies that have entrenched positions and enjoy the low costs of high volumes.

而今,飞机技术即将发生的变革为日本提供了进入此领域的契机。人人都将有机会重新进入或接近这一领域。如果一项新技术大规模取代旧技术,并促使制造或系统设计发生了重大及迅速的变化,那么现有的制造商将失去许多优势。

Now prospective changes in aircraft technology are presenting Japan with opportunities to reach into areas of the industry where everyone is going back to square one or close to it. If a new technology largely displaces an old one and prompts major changes in manufacturing or system design, incumbent manufacturers lose many of their advantages.

将新的电气技术应用于飞机被视为这类机会之一。在经济产业省于一月份与波音公司签署的协议中,电气技术应用与高速率、低成本复合材料制造及自动化并列。

Application of new electric technology to aircraft is seen as one such opportunity. It was listed alongside high-rate, low-cost composites manufacturing and automation in the agreement that the ministry signed with Boeing in January.

浩之说,日本公司(包括一些与飞机制造关联不大的公司)在电池和高密度电机方面都拥有技术产品和服务。这些公司与波音公司于七月份举行会议之后,经济产业省已拨款约7亿日元(640万美元)用于电气化研发。

Japanese companies, including some that have had little to do with aircraft manufacturing, have technological offerings in batteries and high-density motors, Hatada said. Following meetings between companies and Boeing in July, the ministry has granted about ¥700 million ($6.4 million) for research and development in electrification.

在某个此类项目中,GS Yuasa致力将其电池技术应用在航空领域。此外,九州大学及经济产业省下设产业技术综合研究所(AIST)的联合研究则将专注于超导性。

In one such project, GS Yuasa will work on aeronautical applications of its battery technology. Another, by a consortium of Kyushu University and the ministry’s own National Institute for Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), will focus on superconductivity.

村田制作所、东芝和积水化学等其他公司也拥有可应用于飞机的电池技术。而在马达方面,则是多摩川精机,浩之说道。另有两项合作项目,分别由昕芙旎雅和名古屋大学组成,以及由AIST、藤仓、富士电机和东芝基础设施系统公司组成。

Other companies, such as Murata Manufacturing, Toshiba and Sekisui Chemical, have battery technology that could be applied to aircraft. For motors, one would be Tamagawa Seiki, Hatada said. Others are two partnerships: one of Sinfonia Technology and Nagoya University; and another of AIST, Fujikura, Fuji Electric and Toshiba Infrastructure.

经济产业省正在向波音公司引荐具发展前景技术的非航空领域供应商,并能提供政府资助和补贴。浩之说,在经济产业省看来,若波音对某项技术表示兴趣对他们很有帮助。因为这表明项目前景良好,使政府官员在考虑如何分配资金时可以大放宽心。

The ministry is introducing Boeing to nonaerospace suppliers with promising technology and can grant government funding and subsidies. From the ministry’s point of view, Hatada said, Boeing helps when it shows an interest in a technology. By doing so, it indicates that a project has solid prospects, reassuring government officials as they consider how to allocate funds.

电气化可以扩展到推进系统,尽管对于商用飞机而言,其发展前景显然还有数十年之遥。浩之说,于飞机系统的作动中应用更好的电气技术则更可能于近期实现。

Electrification could extend to propulsion, though for commercial aircraft that prospect is obviously decades away. Application of better electric technology to actuation in aircraft systems is a nearer possibility, Hatada said.

同样迫切的是使用新技术来更迅速、更便宜地制造复合材料。快速的生产速度可以降低成本。东丽、金泽和东北大学正在着手这一项目,特别是在制造将热塑性材料与传统热固性塑料结合起来的零件方面(加热时,热塑性塑料会软化,而热固性塑料会变硬)。

Also close is the use of new techniques for making composites more quickly and more cheaply; low costs can follow from fast production rates. Toray, Kanazawa and Tohoku University are working on this, specifically in making parts that combine thermoplastic materials with traditional thermosets. (When heated, thermoplastics soften and thermosets harden.)

波音协议的第三项技术领域是提高飞机制造的自动化程度,这对于提高生产率具有明显的价值。浩之表示,与其说这是一项财政支持,不如说这是经济产业省鼓励的领域,因为日本早已在机器人技术方面拥有强大的能力。因此,问题在于将这种专有技术应用于飞机制造。

A third area of technology in the Boeing agreement is greater automation in aircraft manufacturing, with obvious value to increasing production rates. This is more an area for the ministry’s encouragement rather than financial support, said Hatada, since Japan already has well-established capabilities in robotics. So the issue is applying this know-how to making aircraft.

经济产业省早前分别于2017年与空客公司,以及于2019年6月在巴黎航展上与赛峰集团达成了类似的合作协议。两项合作都涉及人工智能、物联网和航空电气化。与赛峰集团的合作还侧重于发动机技术,而复合材料的工作则由空客公司完成。

The ministry made a similar agreement on cooperation with Airbus in 2017 and with Safran at the Paris Air Show in June 2019, in both cases covering artificial intelligence, the internet of things, and aviation electrification. Work with Safran also focuses on engine technology, while composites work is to be done with Airbus.

 


 

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To find out about obtaining additional data – including the most comprehensive details on organizations, fleets, personnel and programs – click here or call +1.561.279.4661.


 

As a subscriber to one of Aviation Week Network’s market briefings, your searches only provide you with access to articles from within that product.

To find out about obtaining additional data – including the most comprehensive details on organizations, fleets, personnel and programs – click here or call +1.561.279.4661.


 

As a subscriber to one of Aviation Week Network’s market briefings, your searches only provide you with access to articles from within that product.

To find out about obtaining additional data – including the most comprehensive details on organizations, fleets, personnel and programs – click here or call +1.561.279.4661.