Research project: "Veronika"

Research area: Production automation, lightweight structures
Supported by: Federal Ministry of Economics and
  Energy (LuFoV-2)
In collaboration with: Diehl Aircabin GmbH,
  Diehl Comfort Modules GmbH
Start of the project: April 2016
End of project: June 2019


Due to their excellent mechanical properties and low weight, a high proportion of honeycomb sandwich structures are used in the production of aircraft cabins. Flat honeycomb panels play a decisive role, particularly for cabin monuments such as galleys, storage cabinets, and partition walls. Due to the airlines' desire for individualized cabins, the production of cabin monuments is characterized by small batch sizes. As a result, the process chain for manufacturing sandwich components is still characterized by a high degree of manual work and a high degree of process variance.

In order to meet the increasing demand for sandwich components and to ensure cost-effective production in the future, the IFPT investigated the automated production of cabin elements in sandwich construction as part of the multi-year research project "Veronika" funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi). In a holistic analysis of the process chain through to final assembly, the most significant potential for automation was demonstrated in the production of the raw panels, as optimisations at this point positively affect a large part of the process chain. The production of the raw panels essentially consists of three process steps: laying the sandwich, pressing, and milling the raw panel. In addition to automating the stacking process and networking with upstream and downstream systems, such as the press and milling machine, the aim was to standardize the process and integrate additional functions into the raw panel.

Contact person at the institute: M.Sc. Henrik Eschen