Site: Kawasaki Heavy Industries
Aerospace Engineering Dept.
1 Kawasaki-chome, Kakamigahara-shi
Gifu Prefecture 504, Japan

Date Visited: December 8, 1992

Report Author: B. Kramer



I. Ahmad
M. Ashizawa
J. DeVault
D. Gill
B. Kramer
X. Spiegel


Mr. Kohmei Kawaji

Sr. Mgr., Aerospace Eng. Dept., Aerospace Group

Mr. Kohki Isozaki

Associate Dir., General Manager of Aerospace Eng.
Div. & Space Systems Div., Aerospace Group

Mr. Motoaki Yanase

Mgr. of MR&D Section, Manufacturing Eng.
Dept., Gifu Aircraft Div.

Mr. Minoru Noda

Mgr. of Materials & Process Engineering Section,
Aerospace Eng. Dept., Aerospace Eng. Div.,
Aerospace Group

Mr. Hirotoshi Nakayama

Mgr. of Structures & Materials Research
Section, Aircraft Research Lab., Gifu Technical Institute

Mr. Hisao Sayanagi

Manager of Structure Eng. Section, Aerospace Eng.
Dept., Aerospace Eng. Div., Aerospace Group


Kawasaki started assembling aircraft in 1923. The company separated from the Kawasaki Dockyard as an independent company in 1937.

The Aerospace Group consists of seven divisions (see Figure KHI.1). The principal composite products manufactured are shown in Figure 1.2 (Chapter 1). KHI's major equipment for composites manufacturing is indicated in Table KHI.1.


KHI has developed a low cost method for manufacturing an -type stringer, using a teflon rod insert and silicone rubber tooling.

There is new technology for producing super-composite bolts (see Figure KHI.2). The unique feature is that the fibers bend into the thread space, vastly increasing shear strength. They have a 4.8:1 specific strength advantage versus high strength steel.

KHI has developed technology for producing sine wave stiffeners using a low CTE, cast steel tool on the outside and silicone rubber on the inside.


Our KHI hosts preferred not to rate their company relative to others due to a lack of information. They felt that composites raw material costs should be reduced by about 50%, and indicated that they tried to get structures business from the U.S. and Europe, but that their quotes were too high.

When the JTEC team observed that KHI's parts were highly integrated by co-cure; our hosts agreed, but added that they needed excellent craftsmanship to get good yield.

The team noted three items of particular interest:

  1. The use of integral tool heating in the high temperature (450C), high pressure (20 kg/cm(2)) autoclave
  2. The use of integral tool cooling (air and water) in the autoclave
  3. The -stiffener manufacturing process

The emphasis on new process development was on tough resins and high temperature resins.

Figure KHI.1. Organization Chart (Courtesy of Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd.)

Table KHI.1
KHI Facilities for Composite Products

Figure KHI.2. Super Composite Bolt -- expected for future use in the sea, ground, air, space and so on.
KHI expects great activity in all fields.


Kawasaki Heavy Industries Ltd., Aerospace Group. 1991. "Advanced Material Products in the Aerospace Field" (brochure). Japan.

------. 1992. "KHI's Capability for Composite Structure" (viewgraph).

Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd. 1992. "Gifu Works" Cat. No. 5V0071 (brochure). Japan.

Published: April 1994; WTEC Hyper-Librarian