FMW Composite Systems Inc of Bridgeport, West Virginia, USA, is planning a $1.56 million expansion of its production facility in Preston County, which will see an increase in the production of its range of composite products including Powder Metallurgy titanium metal matrix composites (TMC) used in the aerospace sector, as well as other composite products.
The TMC’s use silicon carbide fibre to reinforce a titanium powder matrix to match the strength and stiffness of steel but at only half the weight. FMW currently has 40 employees in Bridgeport and the completed expansion will see a further nine people employed.
FMW-made TMC components have been used in NASA’s Super Lightweight Interchangeable Carrier, or SLIC, and on F-16 and F-22 fighter jets. FMW has also been working with GKN Aerospace to produce a thrust link for the Boeing 787. Here FMW manufactures a TMC tube which GKN Aerospace plasma welds to two machined titanium end lugs.