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Billy joined UCLan in October 2011 from BAE Systems. His role at UCLan is as the Engineering Innovation Manager, developing UK technology research into practical applications through working with SMEs and primes. The technology Billy is presently working on is the application of graphene research into the aerospace and automobile industries. His team successfully flew the world’s first graphene winged aircraft at Farnborough International Air Show in 2016.
During his 38 year career with BAE Systems Billy worked on development of Tornado, progressing onto Jaguar, EAP (Experimental Aircraft Programme), Eurofighter and Typhoon development programmes from initial concept to flight and was Concept Demonstrations Manager for 16 years. He was involved in the development of carbon fibre manufacturing assembly technology and flight development and In 2002 established the UAV business at BAE Systems, successfully flying a number of fully autonomous vehicles. He then transferred this knowledge to the Talisman UUV and underwater systems.
Billy takes projects from initial concept to flight or demonstration; this can involve innovation or common sense.
He is a panel member of the North of England NATEP board and a member of the Lancashire Growth Funding Panel. He also has various advisory roles within the aerospace and defence industry.