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Efficient Aerospace Methods to keep Planes in the Air

October 8th, 2014

There aren’t many industries that value safety more than the world of aerospace. Aviation engineers spend rewarding careers formulating and developing new innovations improving aircraft efficiency and ultimately creating a more secure environment for both passengers and crew.

As the aviation industry continues to expand and carrying more travelers and cargo, improving safety in an environmentally sustainable fashion is a prime directive of many aerospace engineering programs. What follows is a look at one engineering program’s attempt to find non-destructive methods to improve aircraft maintenance and safety.

The A*STAR Aerospace Program offers Innovations in Aircraft Maintenance

Researchers and engineers at the Agency for Science, Technology, and Research (A*STAR) are developing methods to detect aircraft components in need of repair earlier than previously possible. Their hope is to lessen the cost of aircraft maintenance while increasing passenger safety. Leveraging non-destructive methods to find defects also saves time and money.

One major problem with aircraft is when water seeps into the body. A*STAR Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology’s Dmitry Isakov is leading a project to detect water in aircraft components before it adversely impacts performance during flight.

“Water always finds the easiest way to get in, which is around discontinuities such as joints and bolts. Once inside, the water expands and contracts as it freezes and melts, damaging structures, causing corrosion and increasing the aircraft’s weight,” said Isakov.

Detecting Water with a Vacuum

The engineers leverage a vacuum to detect water in an aircraft’s body. The vacuum causes the water to boil at room temperature with a resultant fast cooling detectable using thermal imagery. “Water detection using my vacuum method requires just one technician, is fast and highly sensitive, and there is no ambiguity with the sealant,” added Isakov.

This improvement in fault detection makes maintenance both more accurate and more inexpensive — a perfect result for an engineer.

If these aviation engineering innovations inspire you to take your career even further, talk to the talented staff at The Talley Group. As one of the top engineering staffing agencies in the Northwest, they are a great source of Seattle engineering jobs and timely career advice. Schedule a meeting with them today!

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