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New cleanroom expands Muskogee Tech’s composite capabilities

mt_clean_room_workers Muskogee Technology has received the next certification in its steps to become a leading company in the aerospace industry. The company previously was certified on the industrial freezers it constructed to house composite fibers.

On Feb. 11, Muskogee Tech achieved its quality certification from GKN Aerospace on the new cleanroom MT has installed to produce parts for its GKN contract, including making parts for its customers. This certification allows Muskogee Tech to go into full production cutting composite material for GKN, a global engineering group.

Four new Eastman cutter machines have been installed in the cleanroom, which is an almost perfect environmental room consisting of the lowest levels of pollutants possible. By controlling the level of contamination, the cleanroom provides the most sterile of conditions for manufacturing excellence.

Muskogee Tech now will be able to perform at its highest level, making this certification a milestone for the company.

“This is the next step in our partnership agreement with GKN,” said Lou Roberts, accounting manager at Muskogee Technology. Roberts said the company first purchased inventory in a consignment agreement for production, then completed the industrial freezers to house the inventory internally. Now, with this certification in place, Muskogee Technology becomes a qualified vendor to perform the necessary tasks for even larger manufacturing work in the aerospace industry.

What that means for the GKN contract, Roberts said, is “to take a portion of that inventory, take it out for (GKN’s) customer, and cut it into kits to send back to GKN in Tallassee (Ala.), who will take those kits and put them into the form of a fuselage (the main body of an aircraft).”

The kits are designed in halves, the right side and the left side, and will be fitted into molds to make a complete fuselage, which will be baked in an autoclave oven, using the pre-fabricated materials from the freezer, until it becomes hard.

With this new endeavor comes the opportunity for more jobs. Roberts said about 10 new people will be employed to run the machines and about three or four others will further increase their responsibilities at Muskogee Tech.

“It’s a whole new operation we’ve never done (before) … it’s a whole new kind of quality function our quality team has not been exposed to,” Roberts said. “Although we are in the aerospace industry, we haven’t been into full-blown airplane construction” until now.

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