The Winnipeg Region is home to the largest aerospace industry in Western Canada, is the third-largest provider of aerospace goods and services in the country, has the world’s largest privately-owned independent company for the repair and overhaul of turbine engines, and Canada’s only solid rocket propellant manufacturing plant. As one of the fastest-growing industries in the province, the aerospace industry’s primary activities are repair maintenance and overhaul.
Manitoba’s aerospace industry boasts revenues in excess of $1 billion annually and directly employs over 4,000 people. Aerospace manufacturing, and repair & overhaul account for approximately 80% of industry revenues with aerospace training and services providing 20%.
This industry has developed expertise in advanced composite materials, precision machining, fabrication of high-strength metal and alloys, sounding rockets, and missile design and production. It offers special processes in e-beam curing and specialty coatings, training simulation, testing, and consulting.
In the increasingly competitive commercial aircraft market, aerospace companies have had to streamline their businesses to be more efficient. As a result, companies operating in Manitoba’s aerospace industry have emphasized innovation. Companies have focused on niche markets and on expanding their international supply bases. Through the Manitoba Aerospace Association, the industry has also worked to develop educational and training capabilities to ensure its workforce requirements are met.
Winnipeg’s aerospace industry is led by four world-class firms (Boeing, Standard Aero, Bristol Aerospace (a Magellan Aerospace Company), and Air Canada Technical Services). The industry is supported by a large number of small to medium-sized aerospace suppliers including precision machine shops, tool and dies makers, precision sheet metal fabricators, plating and coating operations, and electronics companies. A sophisticated training, education, and transportation infrastructure provide further industry support.
Ongoing capital investment in the industry ensures the technological basis for sustained competitive advantage.
Winnipeg’s aerospace industry is intensely export-oriented, serving hundreds of companies on every continent.
Areas of expertise
- repair, overhaul, modification, and service of rotary and fixed-wing aircraft, aircraft engines, and accessories
- development and production of sounding rockets and rocket propellants
- development and production of exotic structural composite components and assemblies for commercial and military application
- development and production of ruggedized electronic processing
- products and subsystem integration production of space satellite components.
Winnipeg’s major aerospace companies
- Air Canada Technical Services
- Boeing Canada Technology, Winnipeg Division
- Bristol Aerospace
- Standard Aero Limited
Winnipeg’s competitive strengths
Leading capabilities with respect to composite manufacturing and repair:
- Boeing, Air Canada, and Bristol Aerospace all operate composite facilities in Winnipeg. The Boeing composite manufacturing facility is the largest in North America.
Engine Repair and Overhaul
- Standard Aero Limited is the world’s largest independent small turbine engine repair and overhaul company. Based in Winnipeg, Standard Aero operates facilities in the United States, Europe, and Asia. A 40,000 square foot facility houses its General Electric CF34 overhaul cell and test facility. Standard Aero’s proprietary component re-manufacturing processes allow the company to meet or exceed OEM specifications while reducing customers’ direct operating costs.
Space Systems and Components
- Bristol Aerospace Inc. is the largest of the Magellan Aerospace Limited group of companies, and the only western Canadian company manufacturing space systems and components in Canada. Bristol engineers have developed an innovative, lightweight spacecraft attitude control system, which promises significant reductions in mass, power and cost of existing systems.
- In Winnipeg, the $7.4 million Stevenson Aviation and Aerospace Training Centre provides training programs for Aircraft Maintenance Engineers, to supplement the programs provided at the Southport Aerospace Centre.
- Aerospace Industries Association of Canada – http://www.aiac.ca/index.html
- Manitoba Aerospace Association – http://www.manitoba-aerospace.mb.ca/
- Composites Innovation Centre – http://www.compositesinnovation.ca
Download a copy of our brochure, Standing at the Centre of Composites Innovation – an overview of Manitoba’s leadership role in composites innovation technologies.
View Destination Winnipeg’s Aerospace Industry Sector Profile and other Publications.