ACRES: A Fully Automated, Versatile System for Depainting Off-Airframe Components 2009-01-3279
The Automated Coatings Removal System (ACRES) is a custom robotic system developed by Southwest Research Institute® (SwRI®) to automatically remove paint from large aircraft components in a manner that is safe, efficient, and cost effective.
The traditional aircraft depainting process uses manual blasting or chemical stripping methods and can have significant drawbacks: high labor usage, low repeatability, and risk of composite-surface damage. The U.S. Air Force is working proactively to implement new depainting processes that are more cost-effective, reduce the hazardous waste stream, and prevent occupational injuries.
ACRES will enable the Air Force to depaint off-airframe components more efficiently and effectively. The system will provide better process consistency, reduce manpower and cost, and remove the operator from a potentially unsafe work environment.