Saab’s global defense and security company lands in Indiana
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – Global defense and security company Saab announced plans on May 8 to locate a new U.S. manufacturing operation in Indiana. The facility, located at Discovery Park District Aerospace on the west side of the Purdue University campus, will support production of the U.S. Air Force’s next-generation T-X jet trainer with hiring starting in 2020.
Saab also will collaborate with Purdue University to expand Saab’s U.S.-based research and development within possible areas such as sensor systems, artificial intelligence and autonomous systems.
The Stockholm-based company will invest $37 million to locate and build an Indiana-based workforce in West Lafayette. Saab will construct and equip a facility to manufacture a significant portion of the T-X advanced pilot training aircraft, which will help train future U.S. Air Force pilots for generations to come.
The U.S. Air Force selected the Boeing-Saab partnership in September 2018 for the T-X pilot training program, and it plans to purchase 351 jets in the first phase. In Indiana, Saab will produce major aero structures for the T-X, which features an all-new aircraft designed, developed and manufactured by Boeing and Saab.
Construction of the facility is expected to begin in 2020 at the Discovery Park District Aerospace to support the rapid T-X production rate demanded of the program. Saab expects to begin hiring for assembly operators and airplane mechanics as well as for logistics, manufacturing engineering, and administration and management roles the same year.
The T-X advanced pilot training program offers an all-new system purpose-built for the U.S. Air Force with aircraft, ground-based training and support designed together from the start. With suppliers including Triumph Group, General Electric, Collins Aerospace and L3 Technologies, the T-X will be more than 90 percent made in America and is expected to support more than 17,000 U.S. jobs. Initial operating capability of the T-X advanced pilot training aircraft is expected by the end of 2024 with full operational capability projected for 2034.
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