Popular Processes in Aerospace Manufacturing

NAMF, aerospace manufacturing
November 6, 2021

The aerospace industry is a constantly evolving sector, and having gone through periods of uncertainty in the past, several processes have become notable over the years. Aerospace manufacturing is an industry that focuses on manufacturing aerospace components for missiles, spacecraft, and more. Many of the techniques used can be similar to other manufacturing processes, but the main difference lies in the quality standards and administrative supervision.

To become a part of aerospace manufacturing, companies like NAMF undergo stringent quality regulations while having multiple certifications and registrations. Many popular aerospace manufacturing processes have evolved to adapt to the latest technology and tools.

The Aerospace Manufacturing Supply Chain

Aerospace requirements are complex, and thus, require diverse suppliers and manufacturers to adapt and fulfill their needs. It can take considerable time from acquiring raw materials that are superior in quality to ensuring that the perfect design and technology are being utilized for the final product.

The supply chain must be well planned to ensure that there are no delays. When discussing aerospace manufacturing, having reliable and constant raw materials is crucial to producing high-quality machines. There also needs to be plenty of skilled workforces to ensure no disruptions occur when there is an increase in demand for specific aerospace manufacturing processes.

Using Advanced and Innovative Materials

As the industry is continually evolving due to new technology becoming available, many suppliers are also constantly on the hunt to find lighter and stronger raw materials and alloys to construct aerospace equipment. Aluminum has now been replaced by alloys and composite materials like titanium, graphite, ceramics, and more. These new alloys and composite materials are stronger and more resistant to extreme conditions and other elements.

Many companies and businesses are also looking toward adding an element of eco-friendliness in their manufacturing processes. It is being done by introducing recyclable materials or processes that have the inclusion of biomass-derived materials. 

Additive Manufacturing

Commonly known as 3D printing, additive manufacturing has widely practical uses in many industries, especially aerospace manufacturing. It has traditionally been used to manufacture non-essential plastic components, but recent advances in the 3D printing industry have made other uses possible. Metal printing is now possible through additive manufacturing and has led to easier processes for the aerospace industry.

It has enabled greater ease in manufacturing replacement parts for equipment and aerospace components, even for models that are no longer being mass-manufactured. It is a convenient option for many manufacturers and can ensure no stoppages in the supply chain, especially when it comes to constructing challenging components.

Cognitive Manufacturing

Manufacturing and design in the aerospace industry have long production cycle times, so many finished products are not ready before half a year or a year at least. Cognitive manufacturing utilizes the industrial Internet of Things and advanced analytics to optimize manufacturing processes that might not have previously been possible.

Smart manufacturing is becoming increasingly popular, and not just for the aerospace industry. It can help companies improve various aspects like productivity, product quality, and safety while simultaneously reducing the production cycle time and lowering costs. As such, they are utilizing this process in aerospace manufacturing has many advantages with little to no harmful effects.

When looking to utilize this type of manufacturing, thorough research and due diligence should be conducted to ensure that data and other sensitive information are not leaked by accident.

Automation Processes

There is an immense amount of labor involved when it comes to aerospace manufacturing. Automation is essential to ensure lower labor costs across the production chain while retaining the same quality and expertise. While many companies have not widely adopted the usage of automation, it is expected to become a normalized and highly valued process for the aerospace industry in the future.

Automation can also lead to increased productivity and enhance the performance of human workers in the long term. Instead of replacing humans throughout the supply chain, automation can make specific processes more straightforward and quicker.

Integration of AI in Aerospace Manufacturing

While still new to the industry, artificial intelligence is expected to make big waves in the aerospace industry along with machine learning. It can make changes across the entire manufacturing line and shorten production cycles considerably.

Due to the integration of additive manufacturing, now large loads of data are expected to be transferred across servers and other devices. It also involves the use of complicated algorithms. To make these processes simpler, artificial intelligence can be used. It can also help in natural language processing, decision-making and generate new insights and reports.

It can also help find potential flaws and other anomalies in the production cycle and suggest ways to improve it. AI can be tailored to fit the aerospace industry’s quality checks and processes thoroughly.

Increase in Protective Measures

Ensuring safety and quality throughout manufacturing is essential today more than ever. In light of recent accidents and malfunctions, aerospace quality standards have become more stringent than ever. New technologies are constantly being reviewed to make the finished products stronger and safer for use.

Dip brazing has traditionally been used in a wide range of industries, including aerospace. The procedure enables the joining of aluminum components to create solid and conductive joints. It can minimize the warping and effect of other elements for a long time, perfect for aerospace equipment built to last for at least a decade.

Companies looking to reduce costs for repairs and maintenance are looking towards using similar techniques to dip brazing to improve the structural integrity of their finished products.

The Future of Aerospace Manufacturing

As mentioned earlier, the aerospace industry is increasingly dynamic. With a constant influx of new technology and materials, quality and safety standards mustn’t be compromised. When looking for an ideal way to integrate new technologies with existing manufacturing methods, it can be good to do research first.

New techniques have to be checked thoroughly to ensure that quality is not being compromised. As manufacturers need to have many certifications and licenses to operate in this industry, it is necessary to ensure that no slippages occur that can jeopardize companies.

With research towards supersonic flights and more being applied in real-life, it is the need of the hour for suppliers to adjust accordingly. Manufacturers like NAMF become more efficient while increasing the quality of their materials to ensure that they are producing the best finished products possible. Contact NAMF today for more information.