Melbourne manufacturer Ronson Gears has signed five contracts with defence and aerospace giant Lockheed Martin that will see it become the first Australian company to supply precision gear components to be launched into space.
The contracts, signed under a Global Supply Chain Programme associated with defence sales to Australia, is for gears for the common solar array drive assembly (CSADA) which will become part of several LM satellite platforms.
The gears control the deployment and rotation of the solar cell arrays that keep the satellite powered during its working life.
Ronson Gears is supplying prototype parts for the assembly, as well as delivering anti-backlash output gears, again for use in several satellite programmes.
Founded in 1954, Ronson Gears manufactures spur gears, helical gears, bevel gears to gear racks and splined shafts for aerospace and mining clients.
The gears are all designed to perform with tight tolerances.
The general manager of Ronson Gears, Gavin New said: “Coming from the automotive industry, it was important that we prioritise innovation and invest in digital technologies that could enhance precision across our production processes, especially for the space environment.”
Under the global Global Supply Chain Programme, Lockheed Martin scans its own needs and those of international markets looking for potential partners for Australian suppliers.
Lockheed Martin head of industrial development, Christopger Hess said: “The global supply chain programme is uniquely Australian and provides the local market with access to Lockheed Martin’s global programmes.
“We are continually identifying new opportunities for Ronson Gears to contribute to our missions.”
Other Australian SMEs working with Lockheed Martin in the programme include Heat Treatment Australia and Electromold Australia.
Picture: Ronson Gears
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