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Problems for Industry and Ministry

Problems for Industry and Ministry Aircraft Engineering TH E MONTHLY ORGAN OF THE AERONAUTICAL ENGINEERING PROFESSION VOL XXVIII No 323 JANUARY 1956 Problems for Industry and Ministry wrong to put restrictions on the movements of individuals in this way. ECENT discussions in Parliament have brought into the open a number of problems in the aircraft industry about which Too Many and Too Few R many people have been worried for some time. There is con­ cern, among other things, about the organization of the industry, It is often said that we do not get the aircraft we design so well the degree of real control which the Government, through the efficiently into production. Paradoxically enough, it appears that, Ministry of Supply, has over it; the ways of formulating specifica­ while pressure on the design teams remains great, there are some tions for new civil aircraft, and the distribution of resources within instances of the manufacturing side being under-employed. The truth the industry. would seem to be that it is the development stage, necessarily in­ The question of what the next generation of civil aircraft is going cluding the incorporation of many modifications, which brings with to be like has been brought before the notice of the general public it delays. It is perhaps here, in the organization of this complex stage by the decision not to proceed with the V 1000 military transport, of the production of aircraft, with ramifications through all parts of and much confused thought seems still to exist. Although it must an aircraft manufacturing firm, that there is a shortage of sufficiently have been a very hard decision to take, it seems to us that it was able administrators. Superimposed on these problems are those inevitable in the light of the views of the only potential home involved in the change in the general trend of military aircraft customers for the aircraft, the Air Ministry, and, for the projected production, which will decline in quantity while giving place to civil derivative, B.O.A.C. To have proceeded with the work to the work on guided weapons, and the greater concentration on the civil point where operational experience with a civil version could be field. To avoid patches of redundancy, with consequent bitterness gained could hardly have been justified in terms of cost. Too much and loss to the industry of invaluable craftsmen and technicians, emphasis has been placed on considerations of prestige in the dis­ will be the difficult task of the Ministry of Supply, and this is one cussion on a decision made basically for commercial reasons. There reason why there are those who would like to see the Ministry's is a measure of almost schoolboyish bravado and vanity in the control over the industry made much more effective. suggestion that we should try to surpass the U.S.A. in each and every field. In any case there is a possibility that the American jet Concentration of Effort aircraft operating the much valued non-stop transatlantic service will do so with British engines. Commercially it may well prove that However it is to be achieved there does seem to be a need for a the services operated by the long-range Britannia will be more more organized distribution of effort within the industry. On the rewarding. national scale there is much to be said for concentrating on those activities in which we have been most successful, the most notable example being, of course, the aircraft gas turbine engine. There can Movement of Personnel be nothing but gain from the export of our engines, which are acknow­ ledged as pre-eminent, whether it be in British aircraft or to power It is noteworthy that, although the Minister of Supply has made foreign ones, although the former is naturally preferable. However known his concern about the spreading of our design and develop­ there is the need of aircraft in which to develop our engines, which ment resources too thinly, these considerations did not enter into must at some stage be operational aircraft. It is one of the most the decision to abandon the V 1000. However it is such decisions serious effects of the decision to abandon the V1000 that it will leave which have marked effect upon the movement of technicians within the highly promising Rolls-Royce Conway without an aircraft fully the industry. It is one of the legitimate criticisms of the industry suited to it for development purposes. that, for whatever reason, design teams tend to have a floating population, people moving from firm to firm to follow the type of If it is undesirable for us to try to compete in too many fields at work that interests them, or a leader whom they admire. This once with the aircraft industries of other countries, there is also room causes a good deal of waste of such resources as we have, and makes for closer co-operation between firms in this country, with perhaps it difficult to build up the close-knit and stable teams which must again a measure of specialization. It sometimes seems that each firm surely be desirable. The very considerable degree of competition feels bound, for its own prestige, to take on more different types of between the firms for the talents of the best men aggravates this aircraft than may be really wise. One or two firms have in fact long position, and it might be a case where greater efficiency could result specialized in some degree, but it seems likely that the time will from an agreement not to compete, although naturally it would be come when this will be even more necessary. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology Emerald Publishing

Problems for Industry and Ministry

Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology , Volume 28 (1): 1 – Jan 1, 1956

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN
0002-2667
DOI
10.1108/eb032646
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Aircraft Engineering TH E MONTHLY ORGAN OF THE AERONAUTICAL ENGINEERING PROFESSION VOL XXVIII No 323 JANUARY 1956 Problems for Industry and Ministry wrong to put restrictions on the movements of individuals in this way. ECENT discussions in Parliament have brought into the open a number of problems in the aircraft industry about which Too Many and Too Few R many people have been worried for some time. There is con­ cern, among other things, about the organization of the industry, It is often said that we do not get the aircraft we design so well the degree of real control which the Government, through the efficiently into production. Paradoxically enough, it appears that, Ministry of Supply, has over it; the ways of formulating specifica­ while pressure on the design teams remains great, there are some tions for new civil aircraft, and the distribution of resources within instances of the manufacturing side being under-employed. The truth the industry. would seem to be that it is the development stage, necessarily in­ The question of what the next generation of civil aircraft is going cluding the incorporation of many modifications, which brings with to be like has been brought before the notice of the general public it delays. It is perhaps here, in the organization of this complex stage by the decision not to proceed with the V 1000 military transport, of the production of aircraft, with ramifications through all parts of and much confused thought seems still to exist. Although it must an aircraft manufacturing firm, that there is a shortage of sufficiently have been a very hard decision to take, it seems to us that it was able administrators. Superimposed on these problems are those inevitable in the light of the views of the only potential home involved in the change in the general trend of military aircraft customers for the aircraft, the Air Ministry, and, for the projected production, which will decline in quantity while giving place to civil derivative, B.O.A.C. To have proceeded with the work to the work on guided weapons, and the greater concentration on the civil point where operational experience with a civil version could be field. To avoid patches of redundancy, with consequent bitterness gained could hardly have been justified in terms of cost. Too much and loss to the industry of invaluable craftsmen and technicians, emphasis has been placed on considerations of prestige in the dis­ will be the difficult task of the Ministry of Supply, and this is one cussion on a decision made basically for commercial reasons. There reason why there are those who would like to see the Ministry's is a measure of almost schoolboyish bravado and vanity in the control over the industry made much more effective. suggestion that we should try to surpass the U.S.A. in each and every field. In any case there is a possibility that the American jet Concentration of Effort aircraft operating the much valued non-stop transatlantic service will do so with British engines. Commercially it may well prove that However it is to be achieved there does seem to be a need for a the services operated by the long-range Britannia will be more more organized distribution of effort within the industry. On the rewarding. national scale there is much to be said for concentrating on those activities in which we have been most successful, the most notable example being, of course, the aircraft gas turbine engine. There can Movement of Personnel be nothing but gain from the export of our engines, which are acknow­ ledged as pre-eminent, whether it be in British aircraft or to power It is noteworthy that, although the Minister of Supply has made foreign ones, although the former is naturally preferable. However known his concern about the spreading of our design and develop­ there is the need of aircraft in which to develop our engines, which ment resources too thinly, these considerations did not enter into must at some stage be operational aircraft. It is one of the most the decision to abandon the V 1000. However it is such decisions serious effects of the decision to abandon the V1000 that it will leave which have marked effect upon the movement of technicians within the highly promising Rolls-Royce Conway without an aircraft fully the industry. It is one of the legitimate criticisms of the industry suited to it for development purposes. that, for whatever reason, design teams tend to have a floating population, people moving from firm to firm to follow the type of If it is undesirable for us to try to compete in too many fields at work that interests them, or a leader whom they admire. This once with the aircraft industries of other countries, there is also room causes a good deal of waste of such resources as we have, and makes for closer co-operation between firms in this country, with perhaps it difficult to build up the close-knit and stable teams which must again a measure of specialization. It sometimes seems that each firm surely be desirable. The very considerable degree of competition feels bound, for its own prestige, to take on more different types of between the firms for the talents of the best men aggravates this aircraft than may be really wise. One or two firms have in fact long position, and it might be a case where greater efficiency could result specialized in some degree, but it seems likely that the time will from an agreement not to compete, although naturally it would be come when this will be even more necessary.

Journal

Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace TechnologyEmerald Publishing

Published: Jan 1, 1956

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