STUNNING Undertaking Delivers of One of many World’s Largest Thermoplastic Aerostructures


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With the aim of demonstrating high-rate manufacturing whereas lowering fuselage weight by 10% and recurring prices for the fuselage by 20%, the Multi-Useful Fuselage Demonstrator (MFFD) undertaking led by Airbus, with groups from GKN Fokker, NLR – Netherlands Aerospace Centre, Delft College of Expertise, and SAM|XL, manufactured one the world’s largest thermoplastic parts – an 8-meter by 4-meter construction that can function the decrease half of the fuselage demonstrator. The aerostructure, delivered below the Clear Sky 2 STUNNING undertaking, is constructed of greater than 400 thermoplastic fiber-reinforced components. 

GKN Fokker assembled STUNNING, consisting of a pores and skin module constructed utilizing automated fiber placement (AFP) and steady compression molding with body sub-assemblies, and a flooring grid module fabricated from flooring beam subassemblies additionally constructed utilizing AFP and geared up with varied methods.  

Utilizing a 10-meter x 11-meter x 4-meter ultrasonic welding robotic and scaling-up dustless welding know-how from the lab on the College of Aerospace Engineering, the demonstrator was assembled in SAM|XL on the TU Delft Campus. The SAM|XL workforce plans to broaden this robotic welding meeting know-how. 

The higher half of the fuselage, constructed by the German Aerospace Heart (DLR) Institute of Buildings and Design in Augsburg, shall be joined with the decrease half on the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Expertise and Superior Supplies (IFAM) in Stade. 

Arnt Offringa, director International Expertise Heart NL of GKN Aerospace mentioned, “This breakthrough undertaking, which started in 2017, has considerably superior our understanding and accelerated the event of thermoplastic applied sciences for giant and sophisticated plane components. It has showcased the potential for industrial-scale utility of robotic welding within the meeting of thermoplastic aerostructures. The partnership strategy to STUNNING has additionally been an incredible success, displaying how a lot progress will be made when working collectively. Collaboration tasks reminiscent of this shall be important as we proceed to push the boundaries of know-how with a view to meet our sustainability targets.”



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