Lockheed Announces BC Firms To Work On F-35

By August 7, 2013Business, Business News

Submitted. Avcorp Industries Inc. (“Avcorp”) builds the F-35 Out-Board Wing (OBW) Assembly for the F-35 CV variant. Avcorp designs and builds major airframe structures for several global-leading OEM‟s. Avcorp has traditionally manufactured commercial aero-structures. Avcorp decided, in 2005, to increase its efforts to diversify its portfolio into defence and targeted F-35 specifically. Currently (2013) defence comprises between 25% and 30% of total revenues. Avcorp employs approximately 450 personnel with Revenues around $90M, and is located in Delta, British Columbia.

The company‟s defence work comes from three major sources. The first stems from Nose (cockpit) Enclosures that Avcorp manufactures for Chinook helicopters for Boeing Defense & Security (BDS). Secondly, there are manufacturing, machining and metal processing projects being performed in support of multiple United States Navy (USN), United States Marine Corp. (USMC), and United States Air force (USAF) platforms for BDS, United Technologies Aerospace Systems (UTAS) and Pratt & Whitney Canada. Lastly the company has also been emerging, in recent years, as a major Canadian supplier to the Lockheed Martin led, multi-national F-35 Lightning II Program, the largest ever fighter aircraft development and procurement program.

Avcorp‟s F-35 journey began in 2005 with an introduction to Lockheed Martin through Western Diversification and Industry Canada representatives. Over the next two years, Avcorp successfully demonstrated to Lockheed Martin and BAE Systems that it would be fully capable of supplying complex, state-of-the-art, assemblies for the F-35. As a result of that engagement, Avcorp received a competitive Request for Proposal (RFP) from BAE Systems1 to be the sole source producer of the OBW assembly for the F-35‟s Aircraft Carrier Variant (CV) for the United States Navy.. Avcorp was awarded the contract in 2009, following a „Best Value‟ assessment of all proposals received by BAE Systems.

Avcorp‟s scope of work is the manufacturing, stack-drilling, systems installation, assembly and functional testing of the OBW‟s. .Avcorp followed a rigorous New Product Introduction (NPI) process to implement all of the OBW-unique fixtures, tooling and production processes with close collaboration between BAE Systems and Lockheed Martin. This partnership led to the development of a new and proprietary „Stack Drilling‟ process to drill and counter-sink thousands of holes, of various diameters, through up to five layers consisting of composites, titanium and aluminum skins and sub-structures in the upper and lower surfaces of the Out-Board Wing assemblies.

These technologies will enable Avcorp to better compete in a global manufacturing environment for design and manufacturing opportunities on fixed and rotary-wing platforms for commercial, business, defence and coast guard aircraft.
Several Avcorp senior engineers and technologists benefitted from familiarization and training sessions at both, Lockheed Martin‟s Palmdale, CA location and BAE Systems, Samlesbury, UK location. All of these efforts culminated in the delivery of our inaugural complete shipset of OBW assemblies for Carrier Variant in December 2011. This major milestone was commemorated with a celebratory event, at our facility in Delta, BC, with Canada‟s Associate Minister of National Defence, Julian Fantino, along with senior executives from BAE Systems, Lockheed Martin and Avcorp.

F-35C with Out-Board Wings Folded During the same month, December 2011, Avcorp very proudly received a „Best Supplier Relationship Award‟ from our customer, BAE Systems. Since that time, Avcorp has continued to complete and deliver additional F-35 OBW shipsets to Lockheed Martin‟s final assembly line in Fort Worth, Texas. Each of the 10 shipsets Avcorp has delivered to date has flawlessly integrated onto their respective CV aircraft (CF-05 through CF-14) and we expect to reach the maximum projected rate of 25 shipsets per year by 2018.

The F-35 Program is an enabler for Canadian Aerospace Industry to be part of a state-of-the-art aircraft development from the early beginning stages of a program, since it is difficult even for Canada as a whole to justify large-scale development and production of major defense article, such as fighter aircraft. As a result, companies such as Avcorp, have taken strategic steps to integrate themselves into the global aerospace supply chains of aircraft Original Equipment Manufacturers such as Lockheed Martin, BAE Systems, and Boeing, by specializing in the design and production of value-added components.
CF-05 Inaugural Flight with Avcorp OBW’s

Current projections are for approximately 340 F-35 CV aircraft to be built over the next 15 – 20 years with additional opportunities in the future. Therefore, this program could generate over half a billion dollars in revenues for Avcorp. It has already created and will sustain 75-100 long-term, high value, aerospace jobs both at Avcorp and its Canadian suppliers, such as ASCO. In addition, Avcorp continues to engage with both Lockheed Martin and BAE Systems to identify new F-35 work packages directly related to the F-35 CV OBW assemblies, as well as other structural components on the aircraft. This could potentially result in expansion to our scope of work. The F-35 Program is, therefore, one of the key elements to Avcorp achieving its Strategic Goals, including a diversified Commercial – Government/Defence portfolio.

In summary, Avcorp is extremely proud to be working on the F-35, with global aerospace leaders BAE Systems and Lockheed Martin. Avcorp has built considerable competitive advantages from the work we have done, and we expect to extend that even further in coming years.



Lockheed’s investment in BC through four companies, and the 30-year business cycle for the region. Attendees will also have the opportunity to tour the facility and check out the jet parts.

The B.C. companies involved are:

· Avcorp (www.avcorp.com),

· NGRAIN (www.ngrain.com),

· ASCO (www.asco.be)

AIT (www.aint.com)


The event is at AvCorp in Delta.

Stephen F. O’Bryan

Steve O'Bryan

Steve O’Bryan

Vice President of F-35 Program Integration and Business Development Lockheed Martin Aeronautics

Stephen “Steve” O’Bryan is the Vice President of Program Integration and Business Development, for Lockheed Martin Corporation’s Aeronautics Company. In this capacity, he is responsible for leading coordination across F-35 Joint Strike Fighter business activities, including the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps, the Office of the Secretary of Defense and all International countries. He is also responsible for the communications activities, international industrial strategy as well as improvements and derivatives of the F-35.

Previously, Mr. O’Bryan was Director, F-35 Domestic Business Development for Lockheed Martin Corporation’s Aeronautics Company. In that role, he was responsible for all aspects of F-35 Domestic strategy from October 2007 to February 2009.

He previously served as Manager of U.S. Navy F-35 Business Development for Lockheed Martin Corporation’s Aeronautics Company. In that role, he was responsible for all aspects of F-35 U.S. Navy strategy from July 2005 to July 2007.

Throughout his career, Mr. O’Bryan has led several critical initiatives for Lockheed Martin Corporation Aeronautics Company, including Systems Engineering positions on the F-35.

Prior to joining Lockheed Martin, Mr. O’Bryan served in a variety of increasingly responsible positions in the U.S. Navy as a Surface Warfare Officer and then an F/A-18 pilot. These include tours at Top Gun, the Navy Fighter Weapons School, and with the U.S. Marine Corps. In 2003 as a naval reservist, he was activated in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom flying the F/A-18 and led ten large force strikes during the campaign including the first U.S. Navy mission of the conflict.

Mr. O’Bryan is a graduate of Colgate University and the Naval War College. He received his MBA with honors from the Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University.

He serves on the board of directors of the Association of Naval Aviation and Fort Worth Navy League.

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