Japanese chemical maker Ube Industries Ltd. has signed a two-year deal with Boeing Co. to develop polymer composite materials to cut the weight and cost of airplane materials.
The deal with Chicago-based Boeing, the world's largest maker of commercial and military aircraft, will initially focus on developing maturing high-temperature polymer matrix composites for structures around the engines of Boeing's commercial planes.
But the companies said they will look for additional areas of cooperation.
Tokyo-based Ube hopes the deal will mark a broader presence in aerospace markets. Financial terms were not disclosed.
Ube has supplied heat-control films and super-heat-resistant composite materials for satellites, but it sees the agreement as an important first step in opening the door to broader range of aerospace products, according to Koji Kihira, president of Ube's Specialty Chemicals and Products Co.
We've been working to develop this market for a while now, he said.