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Tour and Presentations at Rocketdyne, LA Chapter Mtg

The Aerospace & Defense Forum

Friday, March 15, 2013 from 7:30 AM to 9:00 AM (PDT)

Tour and Presentations at Rocketdyne, LA Chapter Mtg

Ticket Information

Ticket Type Remaining Sales End Price Fee Quantity
A&D Forum Paid Member (before March 8) 23 Tickets Ended Free $0.00
Non-Member Early Bird (after Feb 22 and before or on Mar 1)
See aerospacedefenseforum.org for information about becoming an A&D Forum member.
54 Tickets Ended $30.00 $0.00
Non-Member (after March 1 & before March 8) 57 Tickets Ended $40.00 $0.00
Guest (after Feb 22 and before March 8)
Guests may attend two chapter meetings for free, after which they must become members or pay for each meeting.
56 Tickets Ended Free $0.00
Corporate Member (before March 8)
For employees of Corporate Members who are not A&D Forum Paid Members themselves. Up to three employees of a Corporate Member may attend for free.
59 Tickets Ended Free $0.00

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Event Details


"The History of Rocketdyne"

"If Assembly is Required,
Mind the Gap, Not the Part"

Guest Speaker: Bill Bellows

Associate Fellow

InThinking Network

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne



Tour of
Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne and Museum

Click here for directions and parking.
This special meeting will convene at the Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne Museum in Canoga Park,
full of historical rocket engines and components.  The museum will be closing by the end of March, so this will be the last opportunity for a long while to see this unique material.

After a continental breakfast, the meeting will start at 7:30am with a short presentation on the history of Rocketdyne, followed by a presentation by Bill Bellows of a valuable enhancement to lean manufacturing.
After the meeting ends at 9:00am, attendees can wander around the museum, where there will be people to answer questions and explain the exhibits.  Upon leaving, people can take a tour through the Rocketdyne offices, seeing some of the unique wall displays in the hallways.

The event will end at 10am.

As with all A&D Forum tours, A&D Forum Members will get first opportunity to sign up.  On February 22 the tour will be opened to all US Citizens and those with a green card.
Rocketdyne was formed by North American Aviation after World War II to study the German V-2 missile and adapt its engine to U.S. construction details.  Its engines have powered the Atlas, Saturn I, Saturn V, and Space Shuttle.  In addition to its primary business of building rocket engines, Rocketdyne has developed power generation and control systems. These included early nuclear power generation experiments, radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTG), and solar power equipment, including the main power system for the International Space Station

In 2012 GenCorp Inc. entered into a definitive agreement to purchase Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne from United Technologies Corporation, with the transaction expected to close first half 2013. 

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne Museum
The Rocketdyne Museum, part of the Leadership & Learning Center, contains some of the actual engines and components used to develop advanced concepts and become part of well-known launch vehicles, the Space Shuttle, and the ISS.  As part of the sale to GenCorp Inc., the existing Canoga Park facility will be moved.  However, there are no plans for a similiar exhibit space at the new facility, so this may be the last time to see these unique devices for a long time.

Presentation: History of Rocketdyne 
There will be a brief historical account of Rocketdyne, from its start in 1955 (on the same day that Disneyland opened) to today, with a short video to highlight its diverse products.

Presentation: "If Assembly is Required, Mind the Gap, Not the Part"
In the late 1960's, Frank Pipp, an assembly plant manager for an American automobile company, instructed his team to purchase competitor's cars. His plan was to have the final assembly team disassemble these cars and learn first-hand how they assembled. At that time, if two connecting parts could be assembled in Pipp's plant without the use of a handy rubber mallet, then these parts were known as "snap fit". In Pipp's experience, snap-fit was a rare occurrence. To his amazement, one competitor's car was discovered to be 100% "snap fit", for which his division GM replied, "The customer will never notice."

Slowly, but surely, customers have noticed the assembly and performance results that Pipp's team found in 1969, when they first examined a Toyota pickup truck.

Fast forward to 2013, when the assembly and performance advantages of 100% snap-fit hardware have been demonstrated and replicated within Rocketdyne for over 15 years. They do so with an emphasis on "better thinking about thinking," which shifts attention from a traditional focus on parts to the gap between the parts and, thereby, how parts integrate.

Bill Bellows will provide a revealing explanation of how Rocketdyne has achieved this success, using ideas that stretch far beyond the traditional Lean and Six Sigma Quality approaches.
Have questions about Tour and Presentations at Rocketdyne, LA Chapter Mtg? Contact The Aerospace & Defense Forum

When & Where

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne
6633 Canoga Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 91303

Friday, March 15, 2013 from 7:30 AM to 9:00 AM (PDT)

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The Aerospace & Defense Forum

The Aerospace & Defense Forum is a global aerospace and defense leadership community of over 1500 with six chapters providing opportunities for sharing of information, current events, and analysis, mutual support and encouragement, partnering, innovation, and performance breakthroughs.

Website: AerospaceDefenseForum.org

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Tour and Presentations at Rocketdyne, LA Chapter Mtg
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