When it comes to retrofitting for aircraft, time is of the essence. With tight retrofit timescales to meet, Airbus was looking for a quick and smart solution to produce the spacer panels, and they found it in Materialise’s Certified Additive Manufacturing.
The collaboration between Materialise and Airbus started when Materialise announced the manufacture of 3D-printed plastic parts for Airbus’s A350 XWB. Since then, the collaboration has steadily grown and is currently expanding to new programs and services. Among these, Airbus upgrades is at the forefront. Airbus upgrades can benefit from the many of the advantages of 3D printing such as speed, customization and cost-effectiveness for small batch production while meeting the stringent quality requirements of airworthiness authorities, Airbus, and their final customers.
The partnership between Materialise and Airbus is producing the first 3D-printed parts to be placed in the cabins of Airbus’s commercial aircraft, where they will be visible to passengers: spacer panels located alongside the overhead storage compartments.
For Airbus upgrades, the project showcases the flexibility and lead-time that they can offer to airlines with the support of Additive Manufacturing.