Manufacturing News Round Up – April 2020

The UK manufacturing sector is constantly changing, and this is especially true amid the current healthcare crisis. Every month, we look at the latest news from this industry in order to showcase what’s been going on; there have been plenty of developments in April, so take a look below at some of our favourite news stories from the last month.

industrial concept

UK Manufacturers are Helping Healthcare

One of the best bits of news to come out in April was the fact that many UK manufacturers have chosen to help the NHS deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. They are contributing to the production of ventilators and other essential tools and equipment, which have helped countless professionals and patients across the nation.

For instance, AE Aerospace produced over 6,000 ventilator parts in less than a fortnight, which was achieved by the staff working 24/7; Composite Integration are using their design and manufacturing capabilities to create face visors. There are plenty more examples of UK companies helping the medical industry, which you can read more about here.

European Springs are also doing our best to help out – from springs for ventilators and syringe drivers, we’ve been busy contributing to this sector and are thrilled to be able to help professionals across the UK. You can read more about our work in our article “Our Small Medical Components Are Playing a Large Role in Today’s Healthcare Climate”.

Make UK Say Apprenticeships Need to Continue

The manufacturers’ organisation has said that care needs to be taken not to keep the ‘next generation on lockdown’. Make UK believe that engineering and manufacturing employers shouldn’t postpone their apprentice recruitment plans, since more than 2,000 young people are looking for placements.

With many companies considering delaying or cancelling such programs due to the current situation, Make UK knows that manufacturers should look at the future of their business, especially considering how apprentices can offer new ideas that are key for growth.

You can read more about Make UK’s position on the matter here.

Vauxhall in the Wirral Might Reopen with Social Distancing in Place

With some countries already easing their lockdown measures, it stands to reason that the UK will follow, sooner or later. So, many companies are already preparing for the inevitable and thinking about how they can ensure production while still obeying safety rules that will, no doubt, remain in place for a while.

Automotive production line Welding car body. Modern car Assembly plant

The Vauxhall plant in Ellesmere Port, Wirral, is leading the way with its social distancing plans. The company wants to ensure that their employees have a safe return to work, so it has added signs of physical distancing throughout the plant, from the factory floor to rest areas and bathrooms.

Other measures include separate entrances for different groups of employees and the compulsory use of face masks and eye protection.

Re-Energising the UK Aircraft Industry

Founded to re-energise the UK aircraft sector, AERALIS will build innovative aircraft using a modular design in order to motivate a generation of young people to train in aerospace engineering, manufacturing and STEM subjects.

The company plans to provide a modular fighter trainer aircraft range to many air forces around the world, including the Royal Air Force. It’s important that the aircraft have the ability to be repaired several times in a fairly easy way, since they will be used for training. The outer wings, the empennage and the nacelle are likely to be made from composite.

AI is Helping Coral Reef Conservation

Technology is a key part of manufacturing, especially due to the Internet of Things and Industry 4.0. Artificial Intelligence is just one of the important technologies that are transforming the sector and the world. From helping to improve manufacturing processes to helping people with disabilities, AI can be used in a range of different ways.

Coral reef conservation is a great example of that. The technology is being used in the Philippines to monitor, characterise and analyse the resilience of coral reefs in an effort to preserve them. Corals create a habitat for many marine species, and are incredibly important for the planet’s ecosystem, so it’s vital that they’re protected.

They are currently being harmed by the effects of overfishing, bottom trawling, rising temperatures and coastal development, so projects like these may be the answer to help coral reefs.

Airbus Will Swap Seats for Cargo to Help Businesses and Trade

Airbus is already looking to swap seats for cargo in order to help airlines and global trade, which are suffering from the effects of lockdown measures everywhere. The aerospace company is developing a modification for their A330 and A350 family of aircraft to allow airlines to install freight pallets onto the cabin floor.

This is aimed at helping airlines to remain afloat and to help curtail the global shortage of cargo capacity. With the modifications, it will also be easier for medical equipment and supplies to be transported. The alterations include increased fire protection and 9G load-resistant capability, so that nothing moves while the planes are in the air.

Loading of cargo container

European Springs are leading custom spring manufacturers, and we believe it’s important to stay on top of the latest industry news. You can also keep up to date with these and other items of news by checking our blog page, where we publish articles related to manufacturing and engineering on a regular basis.

Get in touch today if you’d like to learn more about our products and how we can help you remain competitive in the current global situation.

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