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2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2073
Rick Calawa
The decision to completely replace a successful automated production system at the heart of a high volume aircraft factory does not come easily. A point is reached when upgrades and retrofits are insufficient to meet increasing capacity demands and additional floor space is simply unavailable. The goals of this project were to greatly increase production volume, reduce floor space, improve the build process, and smooth factory flow without disrupting today’s manufacturing. Two decades of lessons learned were leveraged along with advancements in the aircraft assembly industry, modern machine control technologies, and maturing safety standards to justify the risk and expense of a ground-up redesign. This paper will describe how an automated wing spar fastening system that has performed well for 20 years is analyzed and ultimately replaced without disturbing the high manufacturing rate of a single aisle commercial aircraft program.
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2085
Sergey Lupuleac, Nadezhda Zaitseva, Margarita Petukhova, Julia Shinder, Sergey Berezin, Valeriia Khashba, Elodie Bonhomme
The paper is devoted to simulation of A320 wing assembly on the base of numerical experiments carried out with the help of ASRP software [1]. The main goal is to find fasteners’ configuration with minimal number of fastening elements that provides closing of admissible initial gaps. However, for considered junction type initial gap field is not known a priori though it should be provided as input data for computations. In order to resolve this problem the methodology of random initial gap generation based on available results of gap measurements is developed along with algorithms for optimization of fasteners' configuration on generated initial gaps. Presented paper illustrates how this methodology allows optimizing assembly process for A320 wing. 1. Lupuleac, S., Petukhova, M., Shinder, J., Smirnov, A. et al., "Software Complex for Simulation of Riveting Process: Concept and Applications," SAE Technical Paper 2016-01-2090, 2016, doi:10.4271/2016-01-2090.
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2166
Hendrik Susemihl, Christoph Brillinger, Sven Philipp Stürmer, Stephan Hansen, Christian Boehlmann, Simon Kothe, Jörg Wollnack, Wolfgang Hintze
Internationally growing flight and passenger numbers have led to a joined order backlog of Airbus and Boeing of approx. 12,500 aircrafts. With today’s production rates the delivery of all aircrafts would take 8.5 years. The resulting endeavor for higher productivity requests more flexible manufacturing solutions. A bottleneck in production is the machining of large aircraft components. These components are commonly machined by vast portal machines. Due to time-consuming referencing processes, cost-effectiveness of these high-invest-machines is often non-satisfying. Mobile robots already have proven their advantages for drilling and fastening applications performing short, high-accuracy movements. With mobile robot-based solutions machining processes can be executed simultaneously which increases the productivity significantly. However, machining paths often have the same dimension as the component itself.
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2149
Cameron S. Gillespie
As carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP) become integrated more and more into the design of aircraft structures, aircraft manufacturers are demanding higher speed and efficiency CFRP deposition systems. To facilitate the manufacture of large surface area and low contour parts (wing skins, in this case) at a high production rate, Electroimpact has developed a new Automated Fiber Placement (AFP) end effector consisting of twenty 1.5” wide pre-preg carbon tows. The new head design has been named the ‘OH20’, short for ‘One and a Half Inch, 20 Tows’. This AFP head format creates a deposition swath over 30 inches wide when all 20 tows are active. Two of these AFP end effectors have been integrated with a quick change robotic tool changer on a high speed, high acceleration, and accurate moving beam gantry. All end effector loading, maintenance, and cleaning can be accomplished in a maintenance cell while the other AFP head is in use depositing CFRP in the part cell.
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2074
Thorsten Dillhoefer
Ever increasing process applications inspire us, as suppliers of aircraft, structural-assembly, and equipment to design innovative and modular, manufacturing cells in compliance with modern specifications. The result is the new flexible C-Frame Panel Assembly Cell (CPAC) Bulkhead riveting System. This paper describes how benchmarks for flexible automated drilling and fastening are being achieved with the CPAC.
2017-09-19
Journal Article
2017-01-2154
Alan Hiken
A review of critical technologies and manufacturing advances that have enabled the evolution of the composite fuselage is described. The author’s perspective on several development, military, and production programs that have influenced and affected the current state of commercial fuselage production is presented. The enabling technologies and current approaches being used for wide body aircraft fuselage fabrication and the potential reasons why are addressed. Some questions about the future of composite fuselage are posed based on the lessons learned from today and yesterday.
2017-09-19
Journal Article
2017-01-2156
Philippe Coni, Jean Luc BARDON, Xavier servantie
A new concept of Head Up Display is presented, using the windshield as a transparent screen. This breakthrough technology does not need the use of complex combiner, bulky optics and overhead projection unit. The novel system use several holographic optical elements to perform a 3D stereoscopic display, with the ability to present floating graphical object in a large field of view. Augmented Reality display will be possible, increasing considerably the User Experience and situational awareness, without the need of wearing a bulky and complex Head Mounted Display.
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2075
Burton Bigoney, Nicholas Huddleston
Electroimpact and Lockheed Martin have developed an automated drilling and fastening system for C-130J aft fuselage panels. Numerous design and manufacturing challenges were addressed to incorporate the system into Lockheed Martin’s existing manufacturing paradigm and to adapt Electroimpact’s existing line of riveting machines for manufacture of these legacy aircraft parts. Challenges to automation included design of a very long yet sufficiently rigid and lightweight offset riveting anvil for fastening around deep circumferential frames, automated feeding of very short, “square” rivets in which the length is similar to the head diameter, creation of part programs and simulation models for legacy parts with no existing 3d manufacturing data, and crash protection for the aircraft part from machine collisions, given the uncertainties inherent in the model and the unique geometry of the aircraft parts.
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2078
Eric Barton, Rick Wolf
The focus of this technical paper is a unique automatic fastening system configuration for loading, positioning & unloading pre-tacked door assemblies within a static C-Frame Drivmatic fastening machine using an off-the-shelf, high accuracy Fanuc robot. In 2011, PMC was awarded a significant contract for supplying commercial OEM aircraft doors and recognized automation was the most feasible approach for fastening each door assembly. At the time of contract award, PMC was an established aero structure supplier with significant automation capability for machining high tolerance parts & assemblies and manual fastening resources to support many different OEM programs however PMC did not have automatic fastening experience or capability. In support of this new Tier-2 contract, PMC reached out to Gemcor to propose a collaborative robot solution for automatically fastening 5 different door assemblies that were historically fastened using a semi-automatic configuration.
2017-09-19
Journal Article
2017-01-2024
Natasha L. Schatzman, Narayanan Komerath, Ethan A. Romander
The blade crossing event of a coaxial counter-rotating rotor is a potential source of noise and impulsive blade loads. Blade crossings occur many times during each rotor revolution. In previous research by the authors, this phenomenon was analyzed by simulating two airfoils passing each other at specified speeds and vertical separation distances, using the compressible Navier-Stokes solver OVERFLOW. The simulations explored mutual aerodynamic interactions associated with thickness, circulation, and compressibility effects. Results revealed the complex nature of the aerodynamic impulses generated by upper/lower airfoil interactions. In this paper, the coaxial rotor system is simulated using two trains of airfoils, vertically offset, and traveling in opposite directions. The simulation represents multiple blade crossings in a rotor revolution by specifying horizontal distances between each airfoil in the train based on the circumferential distance between blade tips.
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2028
Steven Nolan, Patrick Norman, Graeme Burt, Catherine Jones
Turbo-electric distributed propulsion (TeDP) for aircraft allows for the complete redesign of the airframe so that greater overall fuel and emissions benefits can be achieved. Whilst conventional electrical power systems may be used for smaller aircraft, much larger aircraft are likely to require the use of superconducting electrical power systems to enable the required whole system power density and efficiency levels to be achieved. The TeDP concept requires an effective electrical fault management and protection system. However, the fault response of a superconducting TeDP power system and its components has not been well studied to date, limiting the effective capture of associated protection requirements. For example, with superconducting systems it is the possible that a hotspot is formed on one of the components, such as a cable. This can result in one subsection, rather than all, of a cable quenching.
2017-09-19
Journal Article
2017-01-2142
Brandon Mahoney, Jamie Marshall, Thomas Black, Dennis Moxley
It is well recognized that weight savings within an airframe can result in significant lifetime cost savings and increased flight range. The transition of aluminum alloys to lighter, composite materials is an increasingly prevalent strategy to reduce weight on aircraft. This paper describes the application of a lightweight carbon fiber composite technology to aviation, engine start lithium batteries. The transition of lithium battery chassis technology from metal to composite introduces technical challenges not found with traditional battery chassis. Modern lithium batteries contain more than energy cells; common internal components include switch mode battery chargers, health and safety monitoring electronics, and even environmental control circuitry such as heaters. Consequently, electromagnetic interference disruption potential created by the electronics must be addressed.
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2082
Nirosh Jayaweera, Asitha Kulasekera, Posindu Maduranga, Thilina Kasun, Prabodh Seekkuarachchi, Janaka Sampath
Many components used in the aerospace industry are complex shaped, without symmetric axes and parallel surfaces. Fabricating and repairing these components often require fixturing system to support manufacturing processes such as drilling, surface finishing, inspections and assembly. Currently available fixturing systems can be divided into dedicated and flexible fixtures. Among these, the flexible fixtures are suitable for rapidly changing fabricating processes and handling several complex shaped components using same fixturing system. Background research suggested that the pin type fixturing system is the predominant design used in such applications to fix complex shaped components. In pin type fixturing systems, force is applied to a single point of contact. This increases the pressure applied to the work piece and possibility of damaging these components. Further, conventional pins use rigid designs, which cannot adapt to the shape of the work piece.
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2081
Richard Kasler, Agata Suwala, Ashwin Gomes
One way assembly of aero structures has the potential to significantly reduce build times. One of the solutions which goes towards achieving this philosophy is the use of a ‘C' clamping automated drilling system. The Manufacturing Technology Centre has developed, manufactured and tested a ‘C' clamping automated drilling unit to overcome many of the limitations of current designs which prevent their use on a broader range of structures. The drilling unit addresses issues with inter-stack burrs, access, size and the weight restrictions as well as economic factors. The technical paper will present the outcomes from the design and manufacture of the drilling unit that is to be used within restricted access areas as either a hand held device or as a robotic end effector, free from any cables or hoses, allowing full and unhindered articulation of any robot motion.
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2058
Francesco Noziglia, Paolo Rigato, Enrico Cestino, Giacomo Frulla, Alfredo Arias-Montano
Innovative aircraft design studies have noted that uncertainty effects could become significant and greatly emphasized during the conceptual design phases due to the scarcity of information about the new aero-structure being designed. The introduction of these effects in design methodologies are strongly recommended in order to perform a consistent evaluation of structural integrity . The benefit to run a Robust Optimization is the opportunity to take into account uncertainties inside the optimization process obtaining a set of robust solutions. A major drawback of performing Robust Multi-Objective Optimization is the computational time required. The proposed research focus on the reduction of the computational time using mathematic and computational techniques. In the paper, a generalized approach to operate a Robust Multi-Objective Optimization (RMOO) for Aerospace structure using MSC software Patran/Nastran to evaluate the Objectives Function, is proposed.
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2061
Andrea Cravana, Gerardo Manfreda, Enrico Cestino, Giacomo Frulla, Robert Carrese, Piergiovanni Marzocca
An accurate aeroelastic assessment of powered HALE aircraft is of paramount importance considering that their behaviour contrasts the one of conventional aircraft mainly due to the use of high aspect-ratio wings with distributed propulsion systems. This particular configuration shows strong dependency of the wing natural frequencies to the propulsion distribution and operating conditions. Numerical and experimental investigations are carried out to better understand the behaviour of flexible wings, focusing on the effect of distributed electric propulsion systems. Several configurations are investigated, including a single propulsion system (composed of the electric motor, propeller, and the wing-propulsion mounting POD) installed at selected spanwise positions, and configurations with two and three propellers. References: Amato, E.,Polsinelli, C.,Cestino, E.,Frulla, G.,Carrese, R.,Marzocca, P. (2016).
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2080
James Merluzzi, Isaac Bahr
Manually changing stringer-side tooling on an automatic fastening machine is time consuming and can be susceptible to human error. Stringer-side tools can also be physically difficult to manage because of their weight, negatively impacting the experience and safety of the machine operator. A solution to these problems has recently been developed by Electroimpact for use with its new Fuselage Skin Splice Fastening Machine. The Automatic Tool Changer makes use of a mechanically passive gripper system capable of securely holding and maneuvering twelve tools weighing 40 pounds each inside of a space-saving enclosure. The Automatic Tool Changer is mounted directly to the stringer side fastening head, meaning the machine is capable of changing tools relatively quickly while maintaining its position on the aircraft panel with no machine operator involvement.
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2059
Enrico Cestino, Giacomo Frulla, Renzo Duella, Paolo Piana, Francesco Pennella, Francesco Danzi
Future generations of civil aircrafts and unconventional unmanned configurations demand for innovative structural concepts to obtain the structural performance, and thus reduce the structural weight. For instance, one of the method to improve structural component is the material coupling used to alter static and dynamic aeroelastic stabilities. It is therefore useful to use an accurate and computationally efficient beam model during the preliminary design phase. In the present work, a numerical validation of equivalent homogeneous orthotropic material procedure, described in [1] and [2], is performed by the application of structural topology optimization technique [3] on a box beam made of isotropic material. The overall equivalent bending, torsional and coupled stiffness is derived by means of homogenization of the shell skin and of the stiffener plate stiffness. The optimum theoretical conditions of bending-torsion coupling was obtained when stiffeners were oriented at about 27°.
2017-09-19
Technical Paper
2017-01-2094
Tyler Everhart
Abstract Electroimpact, in collaboration with Boeing, has developed an advanced robotic assembly cell, dubbed “The Quadbots.” Using Electroimpact’s patented Accurate Robot technology and multi-function end effector (MFEE), each robot can drill, countersink, inspect hole quality, apply sealant, and insert fasteners into the part. The cell consists of 4 identical machines simultaneously working on a single section of the Boeing 787 fuselage, two on the left, and two on the right. These machines employ “collision avoidance” a new feature in their software to help them work more synchronously. The collision avoidance software uses positional feedback from external safety rated encoders mounted to the motors on the robot. From this feedback, safe spaces, in the form of virtual boundaries can be created. Such that a robot will stop and wait if the adjacent robot is in, or going to move into its programmed work envelope.
2017-07-13
Technical Paper
2017-01-6000
Steven Tray Sorensen, Ardella Hopman, Michael Petersen, Rachael Basko, Spencer Ochsner
This report describes the aircraft designed and built by the Brigham Young University Idaho (BYU-Idaho) Aero Design Team. The aircraft was built for the SAE Aero West Competition 2017 hosted in Lakeland, Florida. The objective is to design an all-electric aircraft optimized to carry as much weight as possible, while also minimizing the empty weight of the aircraft capable of successfully completing a flight circuit. A flight circuit is defined as flying completely around two safety cones for a total distance of about 726ft. The challenge has provided the team with the opportunity to improve design and manufacturing skills, while also gaining experience in real life engineering challenges. As a result, the team greatly increased their knowledge of aeronautical design and manufacturing. BYU-Idaho has developed a balsa/plywood carbon fiber reinforced fixed wing aircraft weighing approximately .7lbs, capable of carrying more than 4lbs.
2017-07-10
Technical Paper
2017-28-1949
Johnson Jose, Ramesh M, G Venkatesan, M Khader Basha
Abstract Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV) are being deployed in military, law enforcement, search & rescue, scientific research, environmental & climate studies, reconnaissance and other commercial and non-commercial applications on a large scale. A design and development of landing gear system has been taken up for a UAV. This paper presents the design optimization of structural components of Wheel-Brake & Fork assembly pertaining to the Main Landing Gear (MLG) for a UAV. The wheel, fork, axle and brake unit constitute the wheel assembly. The wheel-brake assembly is assembled with the strut assembly and forms the Landing gear system. The Fork is the connecting member between the shock strut and the axle containing the wheel-brake assembly. As the fork and axle are subjected to shock loads while landing, the strength of these components are very much essential to withstand the dynamic loads.
2017-06-05
Journal Article
2017-01-1765
Albert Allen, Noah Schiller, Jerry Rouse
Abstract Corrugated-core sandwich structures with integrated acoustic resonator arrays have been of recent interest for launch vehicle noise control applications. Previous tests and analyses have demonstrated the ability of this concept to increase sound absorption and reduce sound transmission at low frequencies. However, commercial aircraft manufacturers often require fibrous or foam blanket treatments for broadband noise control and thermal insulation. Consequently, it is of interest to further explore the noise control benefit and trade-offs of structurally integrated resonators when combined with various degrees of blanket noise treatment in an aircraft-representative cylindrical fuselage system. In this study, numerical models were developed to predict the effect of broadband and multi-tone structurally integrated resonator arrays on the interior noise level of cylindrical vibroacoustic systems.
2017-03-28
Technical Paper
2017-01-1592
Jingdong Cai, Saurabh Kapoor, Tushita Sikder, Yuping He
Abstract In this research, active aerodynamic wings are investigated using numerical simulation in order to improve vehicle handling performance under emergency scenarios, such as tight cornering maneuvers at high speeds. Air foils are selected and analyzed to determine the basic geometric features of aerodynamic wings. Built upon the airfoil analysis, the 3-D aerodynamic wing model is developed. Then, the virtual aerodynamic wings are assembled with the 3-D vehicle model. The resulting 3-D geometry model is used for aerodynamic analysis based on numerical simulation using a computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software package. The CFD-based simulation data and the vehicle dynamic model generated are combined to study the effects of active aerodynamic wings on handling performance of high-speed vehicles. The systematic numerical simulation method and achieved results may provide design guidance for the development of active aerodynamic wings for high-speed road vehicles.
2017-03-28
Technical Paper
2017-01-1304
Alejandro Rosas Vazquez, Fernando Paisano, Diego Santillan Gutierrez
Abstract For many years, the use of in-mold fasteners has been avoided for various reasons including: not fully understanding the load cases in the part, the fear of quality issues occurring, the need for servicing, or the lack of understanding the complexity of all failure modes. The most common solution has been the use of secondary operations to provide attachments, such as, screws, metal clips, heat staking, sonic welding or other methods which are ultimately a waste in the process and an increase in manufacturing costs. The purpose of this paper is to take the reader through the design process followed to design an in-molded attachment clip on plastic parts. The paper explores the design process for in-molded attachment clips beginning with a design concept idea, followed by basic concept testing using a desktop 3D printer, optimizing the design with physical tests and CAE analysis, and finally producing high resolution 3D prototypes for validation and tuning.
2016-09-27
Technical Paper
2016-01-2103
Eric Barton
This technical paper details an optimized Drivmatic machine design delivered to a Tier 1 aero structure supplier to automate drilling and installation of rivets, hi-loks, lockbolts & swage collars for individual fuselage panel assemblies with high throughput & strict quality requirements. While certain robot solutions continue to be explored for specific applications at many Tier 1 aero structure suppliers, robot payload capacity has limitations beyond certain criteria, which often times point towards an alternative machine design as in this case study. A typical approach for adding more automation is to allocate shop floor space based on the solution’s foot print, however contrary to most approaches this solution had to be designed to fit within a pre-determined factory footprint over a geographic location with a high water table that would not permit a foundation.
2016-09-27
Technical Paper
2016-01-2105
Thomas G. Jefferson, Richard Crossley, Anthony Smith, Svetan Ratchev
Abstract This paper presents novel development of a reconfigurable assembly cell which assembles multiple aerostructure products. Most aerostructure assembly systems are designed to produce one variant only. For multiple variants, each assembly typically has a dedicated assembly cell, despite most assemblies requiring a process of drilling and fastening to similar tolerances. Assembly systems that produce more than one variant do exist but have long changeover or involve extensive retrofitting. Quick assembly of multiple products using one assembly system offers significant cost savings from reductions in capital expenditure and lead time. Recent trends advocate Reconfigurable Assembly Systems (RAS) as a solution; designed to have exactly the functionality necessary to produce a group of similar components. A state-of-the-art review finds significant benefits in deploying RAS for a group of aerostructures variants.
2016-09-27
Technical Paper
2016-01-2095
Agata Suwala, Lucy Agyepong, Andrew Silcox
Abstract Reduction of overall drag to improve aircraft performance has always been one of the goals for aircraft manufacturers. One of the key contributors to decreasing drag is achieving laminar flow on a large proportion of the wing. Laminar flow requires parts to be manufactured and assembled within tighter tolerance bands than current build processes. Drilling of aircraft wings to the tolerances demanded by laminar flow requires machines with the stiffness and accuracy of a CNC machine while having the flexibility and envelope of an articulated arm. This paper describes the development and evaluation of high accuracy automated processes to enable the assembly of a one-off innovative laminar flow wing concept. This project is a continuation of a previously published SAE paper related to the development of advanced thermally stable and lightweight assembly fixture required to maintain laminar flow tolerances.
2016-09-27
Technical Paper
2016-01-2124
Sara Nilsson, Jonas Jensen, Mats Björkman, Erik Sundin
Abstract Carbon fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP) is one of the most commonly used materials in the aerospace industry today. CFRP in pre-impregnated form is an anisotropic material whose properties can be controlled to a high level by the designer. Sometimes, these properties make the material hard to predict with regards to how the geometry affects manufacturing aspects. This paper describes eleven design rules originating from different guidelines that describe geometrical design choices and deals with manufacturability problems that are connected to them, why they are connected and how they can be minimized or avoided. Examples of design choices dealt with in the rules include double curvature shapes, assembly of uncured CFRP components and access for non-destructive testing (NDT). To verify the technical content and ensure practicability, the rules were developed by, inter alia, studying literature and performing case studies at SAAB Aerostructures.
2016-09-27
Technical Paper
2016-01-2133
Carl Landau
Abstract Aircraft manufacturers are seeking automated systems capable of positioning large structural components with a positional accuracy of ±0.25mm. Previous attempts at using coordinated arm robots for such applications have suffered from the use of low accuracy robots and minimal systems integration. Electroimpact has designed a system that leverages our patented Accurate Robot technology to create an extensively automated and comprehensively integrated process driven by the native airplane component geometry. The predominantly auto-generated programs are executed on a single Siemens CNC that controls two Electroimpact-enhanced Kuka 6 axis robots. This paper documents the system design including the specification, applicable technologies, descriptions of system components, and the comprehensive system integration. The first use of this system will be the accurate assembly of production empennage panels for the Boeing 777X, 787 and 777 airplanes.
2016-09-27
Technical Paper
2016-01-2089
Jose Guerra cEng, Miguel Angel Castillo
Abstract Aernnova experience on automatic drilling operations started in 1,999. The company signed a new contract with Embraer, to design, manufacture and assembly several structures of the model 170. It was big news for the company. But after that minute of pride, manufacturing engineering people of the company started to think about the process to assemble those big panels of the Horizontal Stabilizer, Vertical Stabilizer and Rear Fuselages in the best Quality and Cost. There were a lot of rows of rivets to install. Some ideas arisen, but the final decision was to forget the available processes at that time and think about to automate the drilling, countersink and riveting of the stringers, doublers and window frames to the panels. There were a lot of doubts, figures to do and obstacles, but the company took the decision of going ahead with that process. That step changed the state of the art at that time in the company.
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