“PFW Aerospace has been supplying metal tubing to the Aerospace industry for nearly 100 years. Given the increasing demands of the Aerospace industry to reduce weight we needed to identify alternatives to metal,” said Mr. Rupert Kästel, Vice President Sales and Marketing, PFW Aerospace AG. “We worked closely with Victrex for over 3 years involving them in every stage of the product development phase through to the qualification. Together we have successfully delivered an alternative to metal tubing and a next generation solution for commercial aircraft.”
A typical straight 1” PEEK pipe with an outer diameter OD 25.4 mm and 1 mm wall thickness weighs only 100 grams per meter without fittings, offering a weight reduction of up to 60% compared to an equivalent stainless steel straight pipe.
The first set of the new tubing are already installed in the MSN001 at Toulouse.
In November/2011 and to avoid disruption, Airbus rescued PFW Aerospace from financial crisis.
According to Airbus, the decision was made to ensure a continued supply of parts for Airbus programs and avoid an imminent liquidity crisis. Airbus closed in on a deal that landed them 51% of PFW Aerospace after paying €4m for a controlling stake. The company has its headquarters in Speyer, Germany, and employs a staff of 2200 people worldwide in a considerable number of locations.
Tom Williams, Airbus head of aircraft programmes, said it felt compelled to intervene because PFW “ran out of cash” and was “a critical supplier”, including on the A350 XWB. "Airbus as a major customer of PFW is ready to take over the company in its severe liquidity crisis. It is the objective to lead PFW out of the actual crisis".
PFW Aerospace is also manufacturing and supplying tubing system for A380 and Boeing 787.