Hexcel has opened an aerospace-grade advanced composite materials manufacturing facility at the MidParc Free Trade Zone in Casablanca, Morocco.

The $20m facility is capable of transforming lightweight honeycomb materials into engineered core parts that offer structural reinforcement for aerospace applications, including aircraft structures, engine nacelles, and helicopter blades.

The facility expects to employ more than 200 people by 2020. Its first product was delivered in December.

It represents Hexcel’s ongoing global investment that seeks to establish a diversified and global supply chain to support aerospace customers’ growing demand for an engineered core.

“Over the recent years, the company has increased the capacity of its existing plants to support its engineered core business.”

Over the recent years, the company has increased the capacity of its existing plants to support its engineered core business and is planning further expansions to capture additional opportunities in the global market.

Hexcel chairman, CEO and president Nick Stanage said: “This facility is critical to our success because it positions us to secure additional growth with our aerospace customers in Morocco and around the world.”

The company currently serves various aerospace customers, including Airbus, Boeing, Safran and Bombardier.

In September, Hexcel announced plans to launch the £7.4m Multi AXial Infused Materials (MAXIM) research and development project and to expand its manufacturing facility in Leicester, UK.

Supported by the UK Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) and match-funded by the UK’s Department for Business Energy and Industrial Strategy, MAXIM will focus on the development of new and cost-effective materials, as well as manufacturing solutions for large aerospace and automotive composite structures.