Component 4.0 - Functionally integrated sandwich components for the aircraft cabin as a prerequisite for Industry 4.0 and innovative operating and MRO processes

The project aims to develop Components 4.0, functionally integrated, intelligent, data-processing cabin sandwich components. Traditionally, aircraft components have been based on a strict separation of functions, with one function per component, for safety and reliability reasons. However, this hierarchical division of systems and functions impedes the development of multifunctional, highly integrated, and weight-optimized components. Automotive engineering has demonstrated that integrating additional functions, such as energy and data transmission, into components reduces the weight of the overall system while maintaining reliability and safety. This integration also improves comfort for occupants and leads to more efficient production, assembly, and maintenance processes.

Therefore, it is necessary to apply the principle of functional integration to components in aircraft construction. The cabin provides ample opportunities to design, manufacture, and utilize functionally integrated components with various electronic and IT functionalities. Relevant areas include the cabin interior panelling, floor, monuments, and other sandwich components used in the cabin.

Sub-project: Cabin system integration

The Institute of Aircraft Cabin Systems is working on the 'Cabin System Integration' sub-project, which involves (1) materials and processes for sandwich panel production, (2) electronics integration and assembly, connection technology, and (4) modelling, simulation, and testing to develop innovative solutions.

The TUHH sub-project aims to design new types of functionally integrated lightweight components for aircraft cabins. The integrated functions should be usable for both manufacturing and maintaining the cabin product, such as identification features or data logging, as well as for cabin operation, such as lighting, sensors, or passenger communication interfaces. For the design of such multifunctional, intelligent and data-processing sandwich components, already familiar electronic components are combined with already familiar lightweight components. The challenges are therefore not primarily in the subsystems, but in terms of integration and the appropriate processes, i.e. in the design of concepts for the manufacture and combination of lightweight construction and electronic functions, including the necessary connection technology and communication interfaces, which must fulfil the aviation-specific reliability requirements in the subsequent component. These challenges are addressed in collaboration with partners from the fields of innovative polymer materials, fibre-reinforced plastics, electronics integration and assembly, connection technology, component inspection, and testing.

Project duration: 01 June 2019 - 30 December 2021
Funding reference number: 20X1727A

Gefördert durch:

aufgrund eines Beschlusses
des Deutschen Bundestages

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