MIAMI – Leading manufacturer of advanced aerospace components and systems FACC is collaborating with Airbus on the “Wing of Tomorrow” project.

The project’s primary aim is to begin designing tomorrow’s wing technology. Meantime FACC has completed the manufacturing of an innovative flap. FACC is actively working on the program in collaboration with European aircraft maker Airbus. The primary aim is to create an enabling future wing technology and prepare it for series production.

According to the company, FACC is focusing on applying the advancement of manufacturing methods to make wing box lower skins, flaps, and spoiler & droop panels, which are part of the “Wing of Tomorrow” program. The aim is to generate such complex components in a more efficient, straightforward, and cost-effective manner.

In the “Wing of Tomorrow” program, FACC and Airbus are working on the wing of the future. The innovative landing flap – a sub-project of the program – is highly integral and cost-efficient in production. Photo: © FACC/Gortana

Project Details

The aerospace components designer/developer conducted the creation of lower surfaces for wing boxes, successfully as the first subproject last year. In addition, the firm has recently developed a flap prototype using resin transfer molding as part of the second subproject. While FACC applied this technique in previous projects, it has never been used with such a high level of complexity.

In addition, with the aim of exploring technical possibilities, FACC created the five-meter-long “multicell flap”. “With the new wing generation, Airbus is striving for a high degree of integration in order to reduce subsequent work steps as far as possible and thus become more cost-effective,” explains Patrick Petz, FACC Lead Program Engineer for Aerostructures Airbus.

“Integral construction enables us to avoid subsequent high assembly costs and thus achieve a high degree of maturity in manufacturing processes along with high rates,” Patric added.

Imge: Airbus

Challenges Ahead

Aside from the dynamic building process and the use of new materials, such as multiaxial fabrics, the tool design during manufacturing was also a highly imaginative feat. As a result, For about a year, a multipurpose team of employees from Research & Development, Tooling, and Program Management has been addressing this project. Consequently the team delivered the first part to Airbus recently.

“Joint research with leading international aircraft manufacturers is an important part of our innovation work,” reports Robert Machtlinger, CEO of FACC AG. “Our development engineers are researching new technologies and products for the next aircraft generations. One lighthouse initiative in this context is the ‘Wing of Tomorrow’ program, which Airbus launched in 2018 in cooperation with FACC and other industry partners.”

Robert Machtlinger commented on the successful completion of the project as follows, “This represents a genuine milestone in our research cooperation with Airbus. We have jointly developed an entirely novel flap system. The wing component features a highly integrated design; however, thanks to sophisticated solutions in terms of materials, processes, and design, we are able to offer Airbus affordable lightweight construction while ensuring high suitability for series production.”

Featured image: FACC/Robert Gortana