Premium AEROTEC has developed and manufactured a new wing spar with a sinewave-shaped web from carbon fiber composites, as a demonstrator for the use of carbon fiber in aircraft wing construction. The component was the result of a two-year technology project in collaboration with Boeing.
Within this project, Premium AEROTEC was responsible for analysing, designing, and manufacturing of the entire demonstrator. The demonstrator represents a 2.5 metre-long section of a heavily loaded wing spar on a 1:1 scale. The web’s sinewaved-shaped form allows for a significant reduction in the weight of the component compared to standard spars today which have monolithic or discretely reinforced even webs.
Manufacturing the sinewave spar as one monolithic component using the patented ‘Vacuum Assisted Process’ (VAP)with just one single infusion cycle, allows the reinforcement of the junction area between flange and caps with endless carbon fibers. Since no discrete connecting elements such as bolts, doublers or bonds are used, the construction method suggested by Premium AEROTEC, enables additional weight savings (around ten percent according to the company’s assessment) compared to other manufacturing concepts for sinewave spars.
In addition to the weight reduction for such a massive structural component, the number of components and the process and assembly steps could also be reduced considerably. This offers considerable advantages in respect of manufacturing and maintenance costs. The demonstrator shows that the decisive geometric and strength-relevant features for use in commercial aircraft can be fulfilled with the VAP method at high reproducibility.