This paper describes how Measurement Assisted Determinate Assembly (MADA) can facilitate the lean production of aerospace structures, provided that the structure is designed for MADA. A novel wingbox design and production process is used to illustrate this. The aerospace industry has not benefited from the significant reductions in production cost and cycle time that can result from greater assembly efficiency, part-to-part interchangeability and the use of flexible automation. This is largely due to the very high accuracies required across large scale assemblies. The use of metrology can reduce process steps, reduce the reliance on costly hard tooling, reduce the requirement for manually intensive and time consuming re-working at late stages of assembly, and allow low cost flexible automation to place tools to the required accuracies. The generic MADA process is presented together with guidelines for the design of structures to enable MADA.
J E Muelaner, P G Maropoulos
Department of Mechanical Engineering, The University of Bath, Bath, UK
Coordinate Metrology Systems Conference 2010: Reno, Nevada