The NASA-sponsored Advanced Composites Consortium expanded to include additional material suppliers, manufacturing equipment developers, and software developers to support NASA’s Hi-Rate Composite Aircraft Manufacturing (HiCAM) project.
The new project aims to increase the composite aircraft manufacturing rate with reduced cost and no weight penalty through the development of advanced manufacturing approaches and associated technologies.
Advances in manufacturing will enable use of lightweight composite airframes, resulting in reduced aircraft fuel burn and associated emissions, thus improving commercial transport market sustainability and U.S. competitiveness.
The recent expansion makes the public-private partnership 19 members strong and adds important new insights and capabilities to the planning team to ensure the project is positioned to meet its objectives.
Additions to the team include Advanced Thermoplastic Composites, CGTech, Convergent Manufacturing Technologies – US, Electroimpact, Hexcel, Solvay Composite Materials, and Toray Advanced Composites-USA.
“The increased membership will support work to develop a baseline and roadmap for future work expected in composite aircraft manufacturing tools and technologies that improve processes and accelerate the production of commercial aircraft. These seven organizations were invited to join the consortium based on their technical expertise which complements the existing team as well as their ability to share costs,” said Richard Young, HiCam project manager.
NASA is leveraging the consortium to support the formulation of NASA’s Hi-Rate Composite Aircraft Manufacturing Project, a part of the Advanced Air Vehicles Program within the agency’s Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate.
Partnering with U.S. industry, academia, and regulators will maximize the likelihood of impacting the next generation of transports.