Seoul, Korea (Mar 28, 2014) – Korean Air will begin manufacturing sleds for the national bobsleigh team with expertise from the world’s most renowned universitieswith know-how it has acquired in manufacturing techniques in aerospace industry. With a form of industry-academic collaboration, Korean Air will not merely suggest a model for a new creativity management but also contribute to the development of winter sports and support 2018 Winter Olympic in PyeongChang.
Korean Air will establish a consortium which consists of experts group from Korean major universities and University of Southern California in the U.S. and work together on manufacturing sleds and blades for both two and four-person bobsleds.
■ Expected to be a good example of creativity management through industry- academiccollaboration
The industry- academic collaboration team made up of Korean Air and expertise will build a development team in April and commence developmental work from May. The carrier has a plan to supplement it through the first test from November 2014 to February 2015 after securing related parts and completing a prototype. Also it will upgrade the sled every year until the time of 2018 Winter Olympic in PyeongChang.
In addition, it is expected to be a good example of creativity management to make value-added business by the concerted efforts of both the business as well as the academic worlds. Additionally, it will create a synergy effect to promote the development of the sports industry.
Sports Science created by the merge of technical expertise accumulated through development of aerospace technology by Korean Air and sports is expected to shine its importance in the production of bobsleds as carbon composites, a high-tech material used in aircrafts, is used and the study of aerodynamics for the minimization of air resistance is essential.
Korean Air is well recognized around the world for the manufacturing business of the composite material, and aerospace manufacturing technique has been participating in developing the next-generation aircrafts such as B787 and A350 with world-class technical skills. In particular, it has been the sole supplier of a “Sharklet” attached at the end of the wings of the A320 which is designed solely by Korean Air.
Meanwhile, Korean Air will become the pioneer airliner to manufacture bobsleds by participating in this project. So far, mainly European automobile manufacturers such as Germany’s BMW, Italy’s Ferrari have been taking part in producing sleds, which have been regarded as the most cutting-edge equipment among winter sports. As such, Korean Air will be the first in the airline history in the manufacturing of sleds.
■Chairman Cho’s great affection and contribution to sports lead to the grand project
Yang Ho Cho, the Chairman and CEO of Hanjin Group and Korean Air, also the Chief Vice Chairman of Korean Olympic Committee, who helped PyeongChang to win the rights to host the 2018 Olympic Winter Games, supports the sled-making project.
Chairman Cho has been making a great contribution in developing sports in both home and abroad. He was appointed as an official ambassador for the Peace and Sport Foundation, the international organization to promote world peace through sports. He also supported the Youth Leadership Camp initiated by United Nations Office on Sports for Development and Peace(UNOSDP). Korean Air is an official sponsor of 2014 Incheon Asian Games.
Chairman Cho heard Korean bobsleigh national team members using Dutch sleds in practice and have difficulty in setting better records since the sleds were not tailor-made for them. Thus, Chairman Cho decided to design new sleds for the team.
Kwang Bae Kang, vice president of International Bobsleigh & Skeleton Federation and professor of Korea National Sports University, said, “I appreciate Korean Air and Chairman Cho’s great support to develop winter sports, especially bobsleds.”
“If we win a medal in the Winter Olympics with the bobsleds manufactured with our national technology, it will be an opportunity to promote Korea‘s sports science technology to the world,” added professor Kang.
About Korean Air
Korean Air, established in 1969, is one of the world’s top 20 airlines and carried more than 23 million passengers in 2013. Korean Air operates in excess of 200 flights per day to 125 cities in 45 countries on six continents with a fleet of 156 aircraft including eight A380s.
With its modern aircraft and over 20,000 professional employees, Korean Air offers customers safety, convenience and comfort. Korean Air’s award-winning offerings of Korean and Western meals and state-of-the-art inflight entertainment system provide passengers with a memorable inflight experience.
The airline serves six continents with more than 1,400 flights a week and is also a founding member of the Sky Team airline alliance which together with its 20 members, offers its 569 million annual passengers a worldwide system of more than 15,000 daily flights covering 1,064 destinations in 178 countries.
Korean Air introduced the double-decker A380 aircraft to its fleet in 2011 and made the interior more spacious than any other airline, with just 407 seats spread across three classes, with the top deck dedicated to ‘Prestige’ business class. The design also features the world’s first onboard ‘Duty Free Showcase’ and three bars and lounges.
More on Korean Air’s programs, routes, frequencies and partners is available at www.koreanair.com.