Today RBSL announced that welding is complete on the first UK manufactured mission module for the Boxer MIV Programme. It will now move into paint and assembly for the next stage of the manufacturing process.
Brian Fisher, MIV Production Manager said this milestone marks “significant progress” for the programme. He added:
“The first and second Mission Modules have progressed through the welding assembly stations and we are delighted to announce that welding on vehicle one is now complete.
“The MIV team have worked diligently and performed really well to get us to this position and our team of welders are continuing to gain knowledge and experience daily, whilst highlighting improvements within the manufacturing process.
“This is significant progress and we are moving closer each day to Boxer rolling off the production lines at Telford.”
The Boxer programme will deliver more than 600 vehicles to the British Army. Production has been subcontracted equally between RBSL and Stockport-based KNDS. Both companies are undertaking fabrication of the armoured vehicle structures together with assembly, integration and testing of the complete vehicles at their respective facilities. Work to fabricate key components of the programme officially started on March 27 at RBSL’s manufacturing facility in Telford.
Speaking at the time, Colin McClean, RBSL Managing Director said:
“RBSL is proud to be regenerating this armoured vehicle capability and contributing to the Land Industrial Strategy, marking a new chapter in vehicle manufacture for the UK defence industry. Not only will the delivery of Boxer provide the British Army with a complete step-change in capability to meet their MIV requirement, it will also protect vital engineering and manufacturing skills as a sovereign capability to the UK and we are incredibly proud to be a part of this milestone, alongside our partners in KNDS.”
RBSL is playing a key part in delivering the Land Industrial Strategy through the Boxer programme, as well as through its Challenger and In-Service Support contracts. The multi-million pound investment in its Telford facility, and the creation of jobs within RBSL and the UK supply chain, contributes towards national industrial resilience, and the social value and 'levelling up' aspirations the UK Government has set out.
RBSL's Industrialisation Programme is also now complete, with all MIV Production facilities installed and commissioned. The business has invested £40m in its 29-acre site, transforming it into a world-class manufacturing facility so that it can deliver next generation military vehicles and essential in-service support.
All parts for Boxer have been sourced through RBSL’s robust supply chain and the business is in the process of finalising orders with its suppliers in line with the Boxer production schedule.
By working with a vibrant UK supply chain, the MIV programme is helping support economic growth and level-up regional economic opportunity. The programme aims to support and enhance the UK supply chain, including SMEs. It is also ensuring the UK has, in country, the skills and expertise to support the vehicles throughout their operational life.
There has been a significant recruitment effort internally and across the UK supply chain within the Boxer MIV Programme, with a focus on apprenticeships.
Lily Blakemore, a Project Management Apprentice said:
"Since joining RBSL I have been given the opportunity to work on the MIV Programme, something I am very grateful for. The work undertaken by all of us in the team is essential to MIV’s success and I feel very fortunate to be a part of the programme.”
RBSL will now begin progressing sub-assembly items into vehicle one, including the bulkhead, wheel hubs and drivers hatch, with the first power pack being assembled and tested thereafter. When the Drive Module and Mission Module are fully equipped they will then be integrated together ready for commissioning and testing at the end of the year.
We’re proud to work with and support