Not every composites product is ready or viable for high-volume production. Sometimes all a customer needs is support in just part of their current manufacturing process. From lay-up to prepreg cutting, curing to milling and measuring to repair: you can outsource your task to one of Airborne’s sites.
In projects where we supply automated manufacturing systems, Airborne can take the initial manufacturing on-board, industrialise, ramp it up and then hand it back over once production is robust and in full swing. This gives much more flexibility in make-or-buy decisions and reduces the risk for customers to adopt automation.
For 25+ years we have been designing composites products. We know how to create the right product that fulfils the requirements and is strong, stiff and efficient enough to manufacture. We use advanced 3D design and finite element analysis tools and understand the materials to create the proper input data. Over the years we have created many different, qualified product designs in different markets, both in thermoset and thermoplastic composite materials. When it comes to ‘design-for-manufacture’ that is where we add real value to your product.
Without the right tools, the cutting of composites can pose a challenge. Our Lectra cutter machine can help you save time and money. The Automated Cutting Table can cut all kinds of materials, from plastics to fabrics and adhesive films to prepreg.
If you provide Airborne your drawing files, we can ensure optimal material usage efficiency.
To meet composites performance requirements, such as high stiffness, strength and integrity, it is important the structures get the proper cure. Composites are conventionally cured in autoclaves or curing ovens. At the Airborne site we have an Autoclave and an Oven machine.
Airborne has two measurement devices for both small and large products. Our fixed bridge Coordinate Measurement Machine (CMM) can carry out 3D measurement of small products with high accuracy. Our mobile Laser-tracker measurement device can be used to measure relatively larger 3D objects and surfaces.
Products are measured based on the model or drawing requirements. Results will be reported in a clear report, stating the actual measured values compared to the drawing values. The machine is positioned in a climate controlled room for maintaining constant environmental conditions.
CNC milling will accurately finish your composites parts in the required shape with the right features, such as precision holes for the required interfaces. At the Airborne site we have two machine types available, for the precise contouring of flat products (3-axis) and the more flexible shaping of products from all sides (5-axis).
Our temperature controlled painting cabin can be utilized to safely apply primer and paint to products. Our personnel is certified for and experienced with painting high-class aerospace products.
The paint booth can also be used as post-cure facility for further strengthen larger composite structures.
Airborne has the skills and experience to produce high-end carbon fibre (aero)space products. We provide both manual lay-up as automated laminating services.
Experience the benefits of a fully automated and digitally implemented production process with our Automated Tape Laying (ATL) service.
Our employees are trained to work with different types of materials and different levels of precision. Hand laminating can be supported by a laser projection system to ensure correct placement of plies in a laminate.
Airborne has developed extensive experience in ‘infusion’ processes including RTM, VARTM, and single sided mould infusions under vacuum bag. Components can range from e.g 300mm x 300mm to an upper scale example within RAMSSES (EU2020 project) of a 6m x 3m infusion with >200mm laminate thickness.
Airborne can provide support on component design to make suitable for infusion, tooling design, process development and production supply of components.
Equipment available to support infusion processing includes:
Besides creating composites, Airborne has the knowledge and experience to perform repairs on composite parts as well. Airborne offers a wide range of composite repair solutions that can be applied to products of both flat, irregular, and complex curved surfaces. Since every damage case is unique, Airborne will assess the situation to advise or determine the most suitable approach for recovery of the product.
The site in the Netherlands is a fully equipped and aerospace qualified manufacturing site (AS9100), with cleanroom, oven and autoclave capacity, 2D and 3D milling stations and certified quality inspection systems. Also, it has our automated manufacturing systems available for efficient and high rate manufacturing.
Airborne UK can provide an end-to-end service for composite structures providing design services, tooling production, prototypes and manufacturing.
Production personnel and machine operators are trained and qualified for the manufacturing and inspection of composite parts for aerospace and other high-end lightweight applications.
Want to use composites without first becoming an expert? Our smart digital and software solutions make composites and automation available to anyone.
Want to get started with automation? Airborne offers various automated solutions and techniques to help you move forward.
The TU Delft Hyperloop team is trying to build the fastest Hyperloop. Several of the main components of the Hyperloop vehicle are manufactured with Airborne’s automation technology. We are a proud sponsor of the Hyperloop team and look forward to see what innovative solutions they come up with.
The Silverwing Aeronautics students from TU Delft are working on their latest design of a near-VTOL personal flying aircraft, with some help at the Airborne facilities. We are thrilled to be sponsor of their quest to win the Go Fly competition of Boeing, where the use of composites play an important role to make the aircraft light and strong.
The Human Power Team is a student team consisting of students from the TU Delft and the VU Amsterdam. Its objective: to break the world speed record for human powered vehicles. They do this by building an aerodynamic vehicle, called the VeloX. Airborne helps the team to get the materials they need to produce and we provide an oven for post-curing the bike.
Forze Hydrogen Electric Racing is a TU Delft student team promoting hydrogen technology by designing, building and controlling a unique race car. Airborne provides space and technical support in the production of all composite components and supervises the production.
DARE (Delft Aerospace Rocket Engineering) is one of the most advanced student rocketry teams in the world, based at TU Delft. Since their founding in 2001, they have accumulated over 19 years of experience in high-powered rocketry. Airborne provides the DARE team hands-on composites experience to reach space with a fully student-built rocket.