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Airbus Operations GmbH

Development and assessment of an automated installation concept for aircraft lavatory modules

Description of the company
Airbus is a global leader in aeronautics, space and related services. It offers the most comprehensive range of passenger airliners from 100 to more than 600 seats. Airbus is also a European leader providing tanker, combat, transport and mission aircraft, as well as Europe’s number one space enterprise and the world’s second largest space business. In helicopters, Airbus provides the most efficient civil and military rotorcraft solutions worldwide.

Initial situation
One step of the assembly of an aircraft cabin is the installation of lavatory modules. Besides water, air and electrical connections, the module is linked to the aircraft structure by mechanical attachments. These attachments are facing current requirements, like enabling a production rate increase, and improvements should follow latest trends, like automation and industry 4.0.

Currently, the installation and tolerance adjustment of lavatory modules is done manually. In order to fulfil objectives, like lead time and cost reduction as well as constant quality, innovative attachment concepts need to be developed under consideration of automation and industry 4.0 approaches. This could for example allow installation support by robots.

Aims of the project
The aim of the project is to design (3D-CAD, preferably in CATIA V5), prototype and investigate a mechanical attachment (regarding installation time, ergonomics, ...) of aircraft lavatory modules in order to enable and optimize automated installation in production (line-fit / industry 4.0), upgrade services (retro-fit) and in-service.


·    Analysis and understanding of the current situation
·    Literature research and technology screening
·    Development and assessment of innovative concepts
·    CAD design of a mechanical attachment
·    Prototyping (e.g. by additive manufacturing) and integration of the attachment into an existing lavatory demonstrator

Target group
Students and graduates of the TUHH with a proactive and creative mind-set, who are highly motivated to drive forward research and development tasks in the aviation industry and to work in a team independently on the described project. Suitable courses of study are in particular mechanical engineering, mechatronics and industrial engineering, as well as related disciplines with focus on product development and production. Both Bachelor and Master students are welcome.

Especially students with advanced 3D-CAD skills (preferably in CATIA V5, but not necessarily) are highly appreciated.

Please reserve these dates:

  • 17 October: Information event with te companies, from 10am to 12pm, mainbuilding A; LuK
  • 24 October: Kick-off event, from 2pm to 6pm (obligatory attendance)
  • 27 October and 3 November: Project management course, full day (obligatory attendance)
  • Order clarification meeting: 01.11., 15 - 17:00 Uhr,  Zentrum für Angewandte Luftfahrtforschung (ZAL), Hein-Saß-Weg 22 in 21129 Hamburg