Timothy Sinnott is the SVP of Industrial Technologies for the Southern US, and is based at Enterprise Ireland’s office in Austin, Texas. In this role, Sinnott has a specific focus on the aerospace, aviation, energy, and precision engineering sectors in the United States. He works to assist Irish companies looking to expand in these industries by helping them develop their market presence, make connections with local business, and form partnerships in the US.
Sinnott has worked with many organizations in the aerospace industry for several years from a test and measurement perspective but has recently had a much more concentrated focus on the larger aerospace and aviation industry. We recently sat down with Sinnott to learn more about this critical industry and about the opportunities it presents for Irish technology companies.
What are some key issues the industry is currently facing?
The whole industry has been developing and incorporating new technologies at an increasing rate, which impacts all stages of design, manufacturing, operation, and maintenance. This adds pressure to suppliers and maintenance operations to stay up-to-date with changing needs while maintaining their competitive positioning. Major industry disruptions, such as the grounding of the Boeing 737 MAX fleet, places additional stress on supply chains as long-term project schedules and fleet strategies are forced to adjust.
Irish companies help solve these problems by providing world-class part designs, manufacturing, custom engineering services, and innovative technology solutions to both new and old parts of the industry.
Where do you see the industry going?
New technologies are enabling change across all aspects of the industry. Additive manufacturing capabilities are allowing longer-term support for existing fleets as custom parts are more readily available from suppliers. The burgeoning commercial space industry is opening entire market segments as smaller companies can begin to play a part in the future of aerospace, space, and satellite technologies. Innovative composite materials are being used both to replace old components and in new designs of lighter-than-ever parts.
As the industry changes and adopts new technologies, the need for flexible, highly technical, and diverse suppliers will grow. With one of the best technical workforces in the world, combined with a history of excellence and knowledge in the aerospace and aviation field, Irish companies are well suited to these changes.
Do you have tips for Irish aerospace companies looking to expand into the US?
The US aerospace market is easily one of the largest in the world. Significant opportunity exists, but competition can make it difficult to stand out from other companies. Irish companies looking to expand in the US need to have a clear understanding of their value proposition and primary capabilities. Knowing what they do best, how they support customers, and how they realistically compare with their peers is important in establishing a clear market strategy.
Companies should be focused and intentional about where they look to expand in the US. The industry moves slowly and is built on establishing relationships and supplier trust. Choosing the right area and set of customers to establish themselves around is critical to finding early and scalable success. Being present in the region, attending industry events, and building network connections are the best way to build sustained success.
Tell us about MRO Americas, the trade show hosted by Aviation Week publishers
We have had an individual presence at MRO for many years, but have had a full effort with Enterprise Ireland and exhibiting clients together for two years. We grew from six to eight Irish companies from 2018 to 2019. Being able to show the full range of Irish capabilities within a larger area has proven to help the companies stand out at the very large show.
The event gives companies the opportunity to meet, exhibit alongside, and form relationships with companies from all corners of the industry. The chance to meet in person with individual customers from all parts of their respective organizations allows the necessary relationships to form and can be critical in closing new and ongoing business. For the right companies, these industry events help establish recognition, reputation, and engagement in their respective areas of expertise. Our Irish companies in this market have amazing capabilities, so the real challenge is getting their name and information in front of the right individuals.
How was this year’s event beneficial for Irish companies?
Irish companies were able to show off their capabilities and engage with business connections across the whole industry during the show this year. While that enhanced their recognition, it also helped to reinforce the capability and world-class technologies coming out of Ireland. Many were able to connect with members of organizations in person that would have been unavailable or unreachable otherwise. Existing connections and ongoing business were reinforced during meetings, receptions, and events. Companies were able to establish new leads, form new business relationships, and close ongoing business and contracts.
Irish companies that attended MRO Americas
JB Roche designed and patented the world’s first inflatable maintenance shelter in 1999. It has continued to develop and improve its IglooMX® stable of products and now offers over 25 different designs that guarantee a hand-in-glove fit for all models of aircraft. Its fabrics are custom developed and made for use in the harshest environments from-35°C to +70°C ensuring clients get the job done regardless of location or time of year. The IglooMX® is one of the best maintenance investments that you can make with a significant ROI. Scheduled and unscheduled work by over 500 satisfied users with its IglooMX® is an endorsement that the company is proud of. Contact JB Roche for fixed and custom solutions for all aircraft.
Located near Dublin Airport in Ireland, TEAM Accessories is an MRO service provider, providing accessory support on the CFM56-3/5/7, CF6-50/80C2,80A 3D/8D/9D engine for over 25 years with strong product knowledge. It delivers accessory specialization and overhaul services on pneumatic, oil, hydraulic electrical, mechanical and safety equipment accessories on Boeing and Airbus aircraft. Its safety equipment capability extends to slides and rafts together with hydrostatic test and recharge of oxygen bottles.
Eirtech Aviation Services
Eirtech Aviation Services is a world-leading specialist aviation services company providing tailor-made engineering services, advanced composite repair services, and asset management solutions that ensure regulatory compliance to international airlines, private operators and aviation leasing companies globally. Eirtech Aviation Services also develops innovative turnkey solutions for airlines across the world including cabin and cargo bay surveillance system, passenger in-seat USB power and cargo loading system covers.
In business for over 23 years, T&T Precision provides specialized engineering design and manufacturing services to the aero engine MRO sector and is also a high-volume manufacturer of components for aircraft seating and other interior fittings. Located near Cork International Airport, Ireland, the company supplies Tier 1 OEMs worldwide from its 32,000 sq. ft. secure campus. Expert application of optimal machining strategies and continuing investment in high-end technologies makes T&T Precision a highly cost-competitive supplier. Materials routinely processed include hastelloy, inconel, aluminium, and titanium. Injection moulding is also offered. Operating to standards AS9100 and SC21, T&T Precision has a successful track record in aerospace MRO and OEM supply. The company’s medical technology division is also a respected supplier to America’s largest orthopaedics manufacturers.
Airtel ATN is the leading provider of mobile ramp testers for aeronautical data link communication systems, delivering a fully mobile solution that streamlines aircraft data link testing. Airtel’s test equipment and services are used for testing industry standards and validating FANS and ATN implementations across the globe. The FAA and Harris use Airtel’s test tools to verify VDL coverage for Airports across the U.S.
Aerospace Software Developments
Based in Dublin, Ireland, Aerospace Software Developments (ASD) is the world’s leading provider of RFID tracking solutions in aviation. ASD’s RFIDAeroCheck solution tracks 60 different types of emergency equipment and safety locations on aircraft. Of all solutions available in the marketplace, RFIDAeroCheck is the most popular and the most successfully implemented worldwide. Its RFIDAeroTrack solution provides all the functionality necessary, including entity definition, rule-
based alerts and complete data sharing flexibility to allow for the management of tools, assets, staff, components repair, consumables and paper documentation. Tracking over one million RFID tagged items, the RFIDAero suite of business solutions can be hosted by ASD or deployed on site and is fully GS1 accredited and ATA Spec2000 compliant.
Shannon IASC (International Aviation Services Centre) is an industry-focused entity within Shannon Group plc, tasked with building on the well-established aerospace and aviation cluster in Shannon, Ireland. Their mission is to help existing firms locate to the region and develop their business. The focus of the Shannon IASC cluster is global, serving all elements of the aircraft lifecycle, from R&D through to manufacturing, financing, operations and onwards. Shannon IASC is currently the largest aviation cluster in Ireland with over 80 firms employing over 3,000 and growing. Its members have access to a good mix of young, well-educated talent and an unmatched region to live, work and play.
Headquartered in Cavan, Ireland, ATA Group has three manufacturing facilities globally, multiple offices throughout the world, with a robust network of over 1400 distributors in over 60 countries. The company is the world’s premier manufacturer and distributor of precision engineering products such as tungsten carbide burs, pneumatic tools, specialty abrasives, and turning inserts. The company provides tools and consumables for a variety of grinding applications from deburring, stock removal and finishing – across a wide range of materials. Customers operating in key sectors such as aerospace, automotive, oil and gas, shipbuilding and metal fabrication industries benefit from ATA’s expert knowledge of material removal and finishing solutions.