TIG/Plasma welding cell
The CFAA has a robotic welding cell with 10 degrees of freedom targeted at processing large parts and complex geometries. This is a "C" structure cell in which the 6-axis anthropomorphic robot hangs from a tower with 2 axes which also has a workdesk offering 2 additional axes.
Welding technologies developed in this cell are Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (GTAW, also known as TIG) and Plasma Arc Welding (PAW). These technologies are accepted by the aeronautical sector because can generate high quality joints in terms of integrity. The robot also has monitoring sensors and process control systems such as laser tracking system and vision of the molten bath as well as a monitoring equipment of main parameters of welding process.
This welding cell is applied to parts such as TBH (Tail Bearing Housing) located on the back side of the aircraft turbine.
Laser welding cell
The centre also has a robotic laser welding cell with a coaxial nozzle for making workpieces by depositing material (Laser Material Deposition, DML).
This technology enables high quality weld beads with minimal thermal damage in the workpiece. Despite not being an established welding technology in the aircraft industry, recent advances are allowing the use of it rather than better known technologies such as TIG and PAW.