- Airtificial has signed two new contracts with Airbus for the manufacture of the air refuelling pole fairing for the A330MRTT aircraft and cabin structural parts for the C295 model.
- Airtificial’s Aeroespace business line beat its manufacturing record in 2017, with the production of 53,137 aircraft parts and structural elements, an increase of 16.28% over the 45,695 parts in 2016.
Madrid, 7 December 2018. Airtificial continues taking height and adds two new contracts with Airbus. The only Spanish artificial intelligence technology company listed on the continuum has signed two new contracts with Airbus for the manufacture of a complex in-flight refuelling part for the A330MRTT aircraft as well as structural parts for the cockpit of the C295 model. The contracts have a term that is linked to the useful life of the aircraft themselves, which, on average, is about 25 years. These two new contracts represent a qualitative and quantitative leap for the Company as the preferred supplier of parts and structures in composite materials for the world’s aeronautical giant.
The first new contract is for the manufacture of parts linked to the conversion of the A330 civil aircraft to the A330 MRTT military aircraft for in-flight transport and refuelling use. To achieve this conversion it is necessary, among other modifications, the inclusion of a refuelling pole that supplies fuel to other aircraft in mid-flight. It is a complex composite structure that weighs very little but is very strong and flexible. The characteristics and behaviour of composite materials subjected to the demanding conditions caused by in-flight refuelling manoeuvres make them the perfect material for this type of structure.
In addition, the manufacture of this composite part allows reducing the manufacturing process with the previous material (metal) as well as the number of parts that make up the entire structure since the mold allows what was previously done by screwing several pieces is now done with just one. The industrial capacity and applied engineering, with a high degree of specialisation, reinforces Airtificial’s positioning as a strategic supplier of structural elements in composite materials for Airbus.
This contract also stands out for being the second that Airtificial has signed with Airbus for in-flight refuelling operations. The Spanish technology already manufactures, exclusively, the stick with which the pole is handled to direct it towards the fuel tank of the aircraft that is refuelling at thousands of metres altitude. This stick also stands out for being a critical piece (Dal A), the maximum possible in the aerospace sector, and which requires the highest standards of design and manufacturing controls.
As far as the production method is concerned, it will be carried out through the “wet method”; technology based on the impregnation of fibre fabrics in resin in the lamination process itself. This type of manufacturing is very versatile, as it requires fewer industrial resources and opens up a wide market to other sectors.
Structural parts for the C295 cabin
The second new contract signed with Airbus consists of the manufacture, production and assembly of various parts belonging to the C295 programme, a medium-sized tactical transport aircraft. The complexity of this contract is given by the variety of parts in different locations of the aircraft, the most important are the interior roofs of fuselage and the roofs of the cockpit. Other pieces such as lids, hulls and boxes also stand out. The method for manufacturing the pieces is hand, lay-up consisting of the use of pre-impregnated materials, i.e. carbon fibre and resin in the same format. The curing is done under pressure and temperature parameters inside an autoclave (oven). The entire manufacturing and assembly process will be carried out at the Airtificial Airport factory, located in Jerez de la Frontera.
“We have been providing technological and industrial solutions within the aerospace sector for around 18 years. We have managed to develop our own technology and applied engineering that allows us to solve complex situations for our customers in a simple way for us. These two new contracts are a sign of the degree of satisfaction of our customers, who increase their confidence in us because we guarantee the highest quality and reliability of their parts,” says Rafael Contreras, President of Airtificial.
In 2017 Airtificial manufactured 43,154 pieces, 6,787 more than the 36,367 pieces in 2016. That is, an increase of 18.66 percent over last year’s production. This increase is due to the fact that Airtificial has consolidated itself as a strategic manufacturer for Airbus and other suppliers.
Contact: Almudena Esteban
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