ACS: Staying on Target

AvatarLisa Gordon | April 7, 2021

Estimated reading time 4 minutes, 53 seconds.

At Advanced Composite Structures (ACS), it’s not business as usual. 

Surprisingly, despite the challenges presented by the global Covid-19 pandemic, it’s “business positive,” according to Bruce Anning, the company’s vice president of technical operations.

Headquartered in Winnipeg, Manitoba, and with locations in California, Florida, Australia (coming soon), and a New Zealand affiliate, the 33-year-old company has grown to be the world leader in third-party specialized rotor blade repair. 

That growth didn’t stop in 2020. Quite the opposite, in fact. 

“We’ve had a record-breaking year, despite all of the obvious challenges of Covid,” said Anning. “We are very fortunate it hasn’t impacted us. In fact, along with an expansion in product capabilities, business has increased by 36 percent (across all locations), which has resulted in the growth of our staff to meet this demand.”

The primary focus at ACS is the repair of helicopter rotor blades, as well as fixed-wing composite products such as flaps, spoilers, cowlings and landing gear fairings. 

“We’ve stayed true to ourselves and the services we offer during these uncertain times,” continued Anning. “We have come out stronger than when we went in, but in the same respect we’re aware of what’s going on elsewhere in the industry. It’s hard to celebrate success when others are devastated.”

The recent growth at ACS has been spread across its many different programs. In 2020, the company expanded to offer rotor blade repair services for the M-model Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk.

“We were able to capitalize on an opportunity to launch that program,” said Anning. “It was faced with many challenges. For the militaries operating the fleets of Mike models, there wasn’t a field of competitive services. In six months, we went from not having it on our capabilities list to having it fully included. There’s nothing we can’t fix on that blade now.” 

ACS repairs rotor blades for all UH-60 variants, including the SH-60/MH-60 Seahawk and the S-70A Firehawk.   

As a third-party provider, ACS is not affiliated with any OEM and works on all types of rotor blades. The company has applied the lessons learned from expanding its Hawk program to developing a suite of services for the Sikorsky S-92 and Leonardo AW139 helicopters. Anning said ACS will be “in full swing” later this year with a complete complement of rotor blade repair offerings for those models.

“Looking ahead, the business will continue to reinvest in the innovation that has carried it this far,” concluded Anning.

“Our company has stayed true. Coming through this uncertain time stronger than when we started just reaffirms that we are on the right track. We do what we say we’re going to do; we’re affordable, and we stay on target.”

Learn more at acs-composites.com.

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