Posted on: 19 May 2011 by Mark Howells
Bombardier has begun installing semi-automated jigs at its new wing facility in Belfast, Northern Ireland, to support assembly of the advanced composite wings for the new CSeries aircraft family.
The jigs, fixed machinery that will be used to assemble the primary structural components of the composite wing torque box, are being installed in the second phase of a new, state-of-the-art 600,000 sq ft (55,742 sq m) manufacturing and assembly facility. The first phase of the new factory, which will accommodate the fabrication of the composite components, was completed on schedule towards the end of 2010.
Bombardier’s Belfast operation is responsible for the design, manufacture and integration of the advanced composite wings for the CS100 and CS300 jets, including all flight control surfaces and high-lift systems. The primary structural components of the wings will be produced using the unique Resin Transfer Infusion (RTI) process that has been developed by Bombardier Aerospace, Belfast engineers.
“The installation of the wing assembly jigs is another milestone that brings us a step closer to producing wings for the CSeries aircraft programme,” said Michael Ryan, vice-president and general manager, Bombardier Aerospace, Belfast. “The jigs are highly automated and will allow us to control the assembly of the wings with a high degree of precision. We already installed a specially designed assembly jig to produce a preproduction wing technology demonstrator, and are now applying what we have learned from this to the actual production assembly jigs. We are confident that, working with our suppliers, we have implemented a tooling process that meets our high production standards,” added Ryan.