December 2020—Fastems is delivering two Automated Construction Laser Cleaner (AutoSLC) models for the F-35 Lightning II Wing Line. The supply of the brand new undertaking is estimated to be accomplished close to the tip of 2021.
Fastems’ AutoSLC answer is predicated on a robotized system, which is provided with a laser ablation scan head, designed to mechanically take away primers and different protecting coatings from F-35 wing elements. Laser ablation offers a pristine floor to which nutplates might be mechanically bonded with out utilizing connect rivets. Earlier strategies of coating removing entailed guide sanding and solvent wiping which proved to be well timed and yielded inconsistent bonding outcomes. The Fastems AutoSLC system will course of greater than 3,000 drilled holes, decreasing contact labor hours and bettering plane high quality for the tip buyer.
The AutoSLC’s new technical developments, resembling automated picture processing, gathers info on high quality anomalies for traceability and course of enchancment. It would additionally embrace a tailor-made working system primarily based on Fastems Fastems MMS (Manufacturing Administration System). The answer is anticipated to shorten lead occasions by roughly 88 hours per unit, driving down the price of the F-35.
Fastems and Lockheed Martin have beforehand collaborated to combine the F-35 Lightning II Ahead Fuselage Machine Instrument Switch Line (MTTL) in 2012. The MTTL has been vital in bettering security, high quality, and effectivity for the F-35 ahead fuselage manufacturing course of. For this undertaking, Fastems constructed 5 Load Unload & Pores and skin Set up (LUSI) Stations, a Wash Station, and the MTTL Stacker Crane on the Lockheed Martin Fort Value F-35 plant. Additional, the system was scalable to allow Lockheed Martin to satisfy growing manufacturing charges since 2012, presently stretching the road to 130 meters lengthy. The Fastems MMS controls and schedules manufacturing primarily based on the due date of the element, integrating processing phases and machining. The LUSI stations permit operators to hold out pre-assembly duties and changes ergonomically. This newest MTTL answer has already delivered financial savings of roughly 26 hours per unit.
“We are proud and excited to continue our collaboration with Lockheed Martin on the production of their advanced, fifth-generation stealth fighter, the F-35. The path to successful cooperation with Lockheed Martin has been open and frequent collaboration from the very beginning and, together, developing a clear unified vision for the project. This has made processes and decision making much faster and has allowed us to deliver and even exceed the expected results,” says Mikko Nyman, CEO, Fastems. “This has been a truly unique project for our Finnish company, and we look forward to continuing and further expanding our cooperation with Lockheed Martin.”
Fastems has gathered a accomplice community of trade leaders for the event of the AutoSLC undertaking. For instance, the Finnish laser processing firm Ionix helps to develop the laser ablation finish effector of the robotic. Through the AutoSLC undertaking supply, with this established accomplice community, Fastems and the Finnish provide chain are offering a considerable contribution to the F-35 program worldwide.
“At Lockheed Martin, we test and validate any new complex solution from the initial concept, through design and build, and after delivery. The fact that Fastems understands and shares this attention to detail positions them well to deliver a quality product at every phase,” mentioned Steve Callaghan, vp, F-35 Enterprise Growth and Strategic Integration. “Fastems’ AutoSLC solution will help us achieve full rate production at our targeted costs and will provide our customer with a high-quality product.”