Thales kickstarts new era of precision manufacturing at its Lithgow facility in NSW


Construction has commenced on a new $6.5 million building that marks the beginning of a new era for Thales Australia’s Lithgow Arms business and its Lithgow facility in NSW.

According to Thales Australia’s statement, phase 1 of this new industrial plan will establish “a modern manufacturing and integration hub” for the design, development and precision manufacture of next-gen weapons systems for the ADF, industrial partners and export customers.

Deputy Premier for New South Wales Paul Toole, who attended the sod-turning ceremony, said Thales’ latest investment in Lithgow showed that the company was here to stay for the foreseeable future.

“This is a momentous occasion for both Thales and Lithgow today. The $6.5 million investment by Thales in a new facility here in Lithgow shows that Thales is going to be in Lithgow for a long long time,” he said.

“Today marks the future, and a new era that not only secures existing advanced manufacturing jobs here in Lithgow, but will continue to create new jobs into the future.

“This is a significant driver of the local economy because investments like this will ensure Lithgow has a strong future, and will go from strength to strength as we move forward.”

Corry Roberts, Vice President Land, Thales Australia & New Zealand said the company’s industrial transformation plan would harmonise the traditional precision manufacturing practices with the introduction of new digital technologies, and globally benchmarked high precision manufacturing techniques.

Accordint to Mr Roberts, new technologies will include 3D printing, as well as the installation of automated electro-plating and other metal treatment capabilities, to name a few.

“We are a company that loves to make complex stuff – and we take our stewardship of this strategic manufacturing facility very seriously,” Mr Roberts added.

“We are proud of our heritage and our people – and we are excited today to be celebrating the commencement of a new era for the Lithgow factory, and the continuation of delivering truly Australian, truly sovereign weapons and weapons systems capabilities now, and into the future.”

The new initiative will allow Lithgow Arms to expand its world-class precision manufacturing capabilities to support new sovereign manufacturing collaborations for important ADF programs, such as the recently announced collaboration with Rheinmetall Defence Australia.

The precinct will also house facilities that will enable collaboration between research institutions, small business partners, and key industrial partners to develop future soldier systems and small arms, as well as secure the next generation of manufacturing and engineering skills in Lithgow and the Central West.

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