Putin can shut down commercial aviation, consultant warned – Leeham News and Analysis

The invasion by Russia into Ukraine could shut down commercial aviation production, a supply chain consultant expert predicted earlier this month.

Kevin Michaels, managing director of AeroDynamic Advisory, a supply-chain consulting firm, warned at a supplier conference Feb. 8 that Russian President Vladimir Putin “could shut down the commercial aerospace business if he chose to do so.”

Russia is world’s biggest producer

“Why? Because a company named VSMPO is the world’s biggest titanium producer,” Michaels noted. “It’s hard to get accurate numbers. I dug some out of our archives when we last did this in 2010. At that time, VSMPO had a 35% share of aerospace titanium consumption. According to The Air Current, they provide 35% of Boeing’s titanium, 65% of Airbus, and 100% of Embraer. They’re not very big in engines, but they are supercritical and by the way, Boeing’s forgings in landing gear come in a joint venture with VSMPO in Russia. That makes the landing gear for the 787 and 777X.”

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