Robotic Ultrasonic Inspection of Composite Aerospace Components

tecnaLUS, the latest aeronautical inspection system, developed by Tecnatom and Airbus, has reached Technology Readiness Level TRL6, in accordance with the internal procedures of Airbus Defence & Space. This latest inspection system has been validated at the Airbus industrial facilities at CBC (Centro Bahía de Cádiz).

tecnaLUS is a system based upon RABIT (Robotic Systems) Technologies and Laser Ultrasonics (Ultrasonics generated by laser)  with the purpose of performing quality control during the process of manufacturing aeronautical components.

RABIT is a technology designed, developed and manufactured by Tecnatom that allows all the sub-systems required for a non-destructive testing inspection system to be integrated in a coherent manner.  The user has available all necessary information via a single interface: part, coordinates, safety systems signals, machine status hardware and software alerts, ultrasonic acquisition information, etc.

Furthermore, the laser generated ultrasonic technique is a novel technology that uses two space and time synchronised lasers that, generate and detect ultrasonic vibrations in the material under inspection.  Use of this technique makes it possible to analyse parts without contact, and without the need for any coupling medium, since the ultrasounds are generated by the thermal excitation created by a CO2 laser on the surface of the material.

The tecnaLUS system offers an addition innovation with respect to other robot-operated systems developed by Tecnatom. The robot involved moves the part to be inspected instead of leaving it in a fixed position and moving the ultrasonic generation device.

With tecnaLUS Tecnatom consolidates its position in the development of automatic non-destructive testing inspection systems, which it has been supplying for decades.  This new system implies a technological breakthrough that makes possible an increase in the efficiency of manufacturing processes used in the global aeronautical industry.

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