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Commissioned by Airbus Helicopters, Weiss engineers built an innovative special oven, which is used to construct the aircraft doors of the brand new wide-body aircraft A 350 XWB.
Safety and reliability are top priority in aircraft construction. Aircraft manufacturer Airbus relies on the technical ability and expertise of Weiss Heat Technology headquartered in Germany.Airbus started to roll out the new wide-body aircraft A 350 XWB at the end of December. The doors of the new aircraft are built on the German site of Airbus Helicopters in Donauwörth.The technical plant, in which the CFRP components for the aircraft doors are cured, was specifically developed for Airbus by Weiss Heat Technology. Key factors are the ease of use, occupational safety, optimized accessibility, accelerated production and making the operation more cost-efficient. Process in three phases The three phases during the manufacturing process in Weiss's continuous oven are evenly timed. The components are covered with a special rubber membrane, put under vacuum and compacted together with the binder material at a specific temperature. This produces preforms of the component. At this point the carbon fiber compound is only partially set for later filling with resin. The lifting door of the continuous oven opens and the charge is inserted. In the oven, temperatures of between 140 and 180 degrees Celsius are maintained for a period of about 30 minutes. Vacuum continues to ensure that the form stability is also retained at high temperature. Both circulating air and infrared heaters are used to heat the oven. After curing, the door assembly is transported for a cooling step. Depending on the charge, cold air of 4 to 8 degrees is used for cooling."For large components, we achieve the same cooling times by lowering the temperature accordingly" said Erwin Ninic of Airbus. "For smaller components the temperature is correspondingly higher." Once the cooling period is over, the lifting platform returns to its lower position and the system plate retracts to beneath the plant. The loading station cycle starts over again. Professional and cost-efficient Mr. Ninic praised the special oven made by Weiss. "The machine has run daily from March 2014 – without fault and reliably in three-shift operation”The company's machine is the second of its kind for Airbus Helicopters. Weiss Heat Technology Since 1929 the name Weiss Heat Technology has been synonymous with temperature and climate testing systems. Today, Weiss is one of the most renowned manufacturers of systems and equipment for environmental simulation and heat technology. The Weiss Group is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Schunk Group. Airbus Helicopters Airbus Helicopters is a division of the Airbus Group, a global aerospace and defense leader. Airbus Helicopters is the world's number one helicopter manufacturer and employs more than 23,000 people. In 2013 its aircraft accounted for 46 percent of the worldwide civil and parapublic fleet.More information: www.envirotronics.com