Aeroplanes face harsh environmental conditions every day which makes efficient and effective aircraft maintenance and repair key to the success of industry. Conditions such as atmospheric moisture, high altitude, and temperature changes can all cause corrosion more quickly. This can result in structural damage, reduce the performance of critical components, and compromise safety. This is where corrosion protection comes in.
But, with aircrafts structure being complex and made of many different materials, they are difficult to inspect and maintain. This makes detecting and addressing corrosion quickly a challenge, leading to potential safety issues. Plus, the costs of this can add up, increasing the expenses already faced by aircraft manufactures of material maintenance. This is why more companies are turning to selective electroplating for corrosion protection.
Making component coating more precise and efficient
Selective plating is a process where a metal coating is applied just to a specific area of a component, unlike tank plating where the whole part is coated. Masking materials are used to cover any areas of the component that don’t need plating, and then the unmasked areas are plated using electroplating.
For aircraft maintenance this is particularly beneficial, as it can be used to repair and refurbish components that are otherwise difficult, costly, or impossible to replace. This could include components that are no longer manufactured.
By using selective plating, the aerospace industry can extend the life of critical parts, reduce maintenance costs, and improve the overall reliability. It can also be used to enhance the performance of components by applying a coating that is more resistant to wear and corrosion.
Reducing manufacturing downtime
Manufacturing downtime is a problem for any business, but it’s particularly severe for businesses that operate in highly competitive markets like aerospace. This is because downtime can result in a loss of production capacity, revenue and result in production delays that could lead to missed delivery deadlines, lost sales, and dissatisfied customers.
This is where manufacturers can benefit from implementing robust maintenance procedures, adopt predictive maintenance technologies and continuously look for ways to optimize processes and minimize unplanned downtime.
This is where selective plating really comes into its own for aircraft repair as it can help restore aircraft components such as landing gear, flap tracks, and engine parts. It can also improve engine performance, by applying coatings that are more resistant to wear and corrosion.
How SIFCO ASC’s customized system can help aircraft maintenance
Our Advanced Solution Control System (ASCS) by SIFCO ASC is an innovative electroplating technology that has cutting-edge dripless tooling. This means that all chemical solutions used in the process are recycled back into the system at the surface of the workpiece, eliminating the need for catch trays.
This tooling also allows for the component to be plated in any orientation – flat, vertical, or even above the aircraft repair technician’s head. This creates a creates a cleaner and more environmentally friendly working environment while also enhancing safety measures.
The technology is also portable and can be integrated into a production line. This means it can:
- Enhance throughput and productivity
- Reduce ergonomic risk
- Offer significant safety benefits for operators and employees
To learn more about selective electroplating in the aerospace industry, why not download our aerospace whitepaper.