Aerospace engineering is a complex and highly technical field, and aerospace manufacturers must adhere to stringent regulatory and quality assurance guidelines. Metrology solutions ensure that aerospace parts meet the required specifications. Learn more about the role of metrology in aerospace and explore some of its key benefits and applications.
Role of Metrology for Aerospace
For aircraft to function properly and achieve the required level of precision, metrology must be used throughout the design and construction process. Metrology is the science of measurement, and in the aerospace industry, it plays a vital role in ensuring that parts are manufactured to the correct specifications.
Composite materials are becoming increasingly important in aerospace manufacturing because these materials are lighter and can be made into more complex shapes than traditional metals like aluminum and steel. They reduce the total number of parts and thus the number of joints and fasteners, which also reduces the total number of weak points. As a result, composite materials reduce assembly times and make manufacturing more efficient.
Although composite parts can be more expensive and harder to form accurately than metal components, metrology solutions help achieve exact measurements, create tight tolerances, and determine the most cost-effective manufacturing processes. Metrology solutions enable manufacturers to avoid costly errors and minimize scrap material. In today’s competitive market, it is more important than ever that aerospace companies use metrology to ensure their products’ quality and safety. Without metrology, it would be impossible to produce safe and reliable aircraft.
Advantages of Metrology Solutions for Aerospace
Metrology solutions such as coordinate measuring machines (CMMs) offer several key advantages for the aerospace industry.
- Higher accuracy: Automated CMMs can provide far more precise measurements than those taken with traditional manual methods and eliminate the chance of human error.
- Can measure more kinds of parts: CMM metrology machines can measure a wider range of objects, including oversized or heavy parts, those with complex geometries, and sensitive components. This versatility makes metrology solutions essential for aerospace manufacturers.
- Cost-effective: CMM equipment can measure parts with greater accuracy and in a shorter amount of time. As a result, they help reduce manufacturing costs while improving product quality.
- Better time management: Automated CMMs have a much better measurement-to-time ratio, meaning they can take measurements much faster and do not require personnel to be present like conventional manual methods.
Metrology solutions have a wide range of applications in the aerospace industry, including:
- Airfoil blades: Portable, automated metrology devices can identify, measure, and classify airfoil blades up to the micrometer. They ensure that these blades meet the necessary tolerances for safety and performance.
- Blisks and other blades: CMMs can measure bladed disks—or blisks—as well as compressor blades, diffusers, and stators.
- Blade edge inspection: Metrology equipment can inspect blade edges for manufacturing defects or damage that could impact the blade’s performance.
- Chatter measurement: CMM devices can help identify excess vibration in blades or other components, which can cause premature failure.
- 3D inspections: Metrology solutions can also inspect various 3D forms—such as tubes, valves, cylinders, and bores—for accuracy and proper tolerances.
- Precision component machining: CMMs also assist in creating parts with tighter tolerances to minimize scrap from the production process itself.
- Cooling holes inspection: Accurately measured cooling holes ensure that components are properly cooled during operation.
Advanced Industrial Measurement Systems Capabilities for Aerospace
Advanced Industrial Measurement Systems (AIMS) Metrology is an industry leader in advanced industrial measurement systems with a focus on the aerospace sector. Our 5-axis metrology experience is unmatched in the market, and our turnkey system ensures that your measurement needs are met with ease and efficiency. We offer retrofit and software services to keep your system up-to-date and compliant with the latest standards. AIMS Metrology also provides contract programming, installation, calibration, warranty, repair by exchange (RBE), and financing services.
We are ISO/IEC 17025:2017 certified for our calibration services, and our team of experts has extensive experience in providing advanced industrial metrology systems for the aerospace industry. We understand the importance of meeting tight deadlines and adhering to rigorous quality control measures. Contact us today to learn more about our metrology solutions for the aerospace industry, or request a quote online.