The Boeing Company’s Composite Manufacturing Center in Frederickson Washing-ton plans has recently renovated their facility layout. Their current method to perform repairs includes using localized heat blankets or heat lamps, which limits the number of repairs they can do. We were tasked to design, build and test a prototype for an adjustable composite repair curing system which has a minimal stowed footprint and that can fit and cure the size range of Boeing repair parts.
The finished prototype demonstrates the innovative fabric design that allows for the enclosure to both collapse and expand. The structure for the system includes rectangular steel tubing as the main supports with pneumatically actuated wheels attached at the base and rectangular telescoping rods connecting the main supports that can expand and lock to the nearest inch. A heating system that resembles a large convection oven is included in the design to promote uniform heating of the repair parts through ducting and thorough mixing.
The liaisons for The Boeing Company plan to take this design and propose it to management for possible construction in their facility. This design will facilitate efficiency by being able to do a large number of compo-site repairs simultaneously in the enclosure. It will also allow mobility of the system so that it will not take up much floor space while it is not in use.
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