Hill Engineering recently participated in the virtual 2020 United States Air Force Structural Integrity Program Conference (ASIP). The ASIP Conference is specifically designed to bring together the world leaders in the area of aircraft structural integrity and to disseminate information on state-of-the-art technologies for aircraft structures in both the military and civilian fleets. Hill Engineering’s presentation included a summary of recent work related to developing a digital quality assurance record for typical aircraft maintenance processes like hold hole expansion. The abstract text is presented below along with a copy of the presentation slides.
Methods and tools to capture the digital thread continue to be a key focus area to support the refinement and improved execution of structural integrity programs across the USAF and beyond. Data is empowering, however, the lack of connection and communication between individual systems prevents us from successfully capturing, characterizing, and utilizing this data to support efficient structural integrity management. An integrated maintenance system is essential to bridge these gaps, especially with critical processes such as the cold expansion (Cx) of fastener holes and non-destructive inspections (NDI). The presentation will discuss the development of an integrated Smart Maintenance System tying together existing maintenance tools, while leveraging new technologies to automatically capture, characterize, and store critical maintenance data in a digital record. Key components of the system include spatial position tracking, smart tools with sensors to capture critical process outcomes, and software for data collection and a digital record. The ultimate goal of the system is to answer key quality assurance questions put forward by the community: Was the correct maintenance accomplished at the correct location within the acceptable process parameters and… do you have the digital thread to prove it?
You can view the presentation below.
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