[SatNews] Thales Alenia Space has inaugurated their new industrial complex in L’Aquila, completely rebuilt after the company’s historic establishment was declared unfit for occupancy due to the serious damage suffered during the earthquake of April 6, 2009.
The inauguration ceremony of the new Thales Alenia Space Italia site was held at the industrial center in Pile. It was attended by the country’s top government officials, the French Embassy as well as representatives of the region, province and municipality of the capital city of the Abruzzo region. Finmeccanica and Italian Space Agency executives were also present at the event.
With this inauguration, Thales Alenia Space honored its commitment: Less than two years after the laying of the first stone in December 2011, and with an investment of 42 million euros, the new plant is now ready and operational, providing an innovative, state-of-the-art facility centered on technological and engineering excellence that strengthens and confirms the company's industrial presence in the region.
Thales Alenia Space Italia has had its own plant in the Abruzzo region for 30 years. The center is specialized in the production of electronic components and antennas which, thanks to the sophisticated instrumentation used and to the high level of professionalism attained by the engineers and specialized technicians who work there, boasts world-class excellence for both technologies and production quality. Technological development and product manufacturing activities are carried out at the plant, as well as the complete production of electronic equipment, hybrids, antennas and composite structures for a wide range of space applications, including remote sensing, telecommunications, radar and military applications, etc.
The new facility will house Thales Alenia Space’s historic production operations as well as new production lines dedicated in particular to the development of large, lightweight SAR satellite antennas. The new plant covers 16,080 square meters, divided into Production Areas, Service Areas/Utilities (Energy Center), Office Areas and Other Areas (reception desk, lobby, infirmary). The Production Block, the largest part of the facility (10,215 square meters), is located on the ground floor, while the offices are located on two floors (for a total of 4,070 square meters). The reconstructed building meets the strictest seismic criteria required by the new seismic regulations.
The production areas were designed according to Lean Design criteria with the goal of obtaining continuous, optimized work flows with a high degree of reconfigurability in order to meet requirements related to changes in production volume and technology. In terms of energy savings, design solutions were adopted that envisage the widespread use of heat and construction material recovery systems which, besides meeting general eco-sustainability criteria, minimize heat loss.
The new production complex, based on high quality standards and strong integration with the city, has been a top priority for Thales Alenia Space and is now a benchmark for industrial reconstruction in Italy. The transfer of 307 employees from the temporary sites to the new industrial site, which began in mid-November, will be completed by early 2014. This process will be completed without any interruption to production activities in order to guarantee maximum focus on both programs and customers.