Axiomatic Design of a Reconfigurable Assembly System for Aircraft Fuselages 2019-01-1359
Modern aerospace industry develops assembly process lines for new aircraft which is produced on a single production line while shortening production times by new technologies. Production processes are developed with systems such as lightweight fixtures, reconfigurable tools, automated part positioning, automated scanning countersink control, automated riveting, robotic measurement etc. These systems provide the necessary flexibility for aircraft fuselage and wing assembly projects. Aerospace manufacturers invest in assembly lines in order to increase production rates and meet growing customer demands. Most of the investments are allocated to state-of-the-art robots for drilling and riveting, sealing, coating and painting applications, in addition to material handling, carbon fiber layup and different types of machining operations. In this study, an assembly system design methodology is developed by using axiomatic design principles in order to propose a solution to design complexity for aircraft fuselage structures assembly. Framework of design methodology is shaped based on system design methods, academic research, industry requirements and industrial case studies. Axiomatic design and reconfigurability principles integrated to developed methodology. Holistic and hierarchical design approach is demonstrated. Aircraft fuselage panel assembly case study is carried out for better understanding of how the methodology is applied. It has been shown in the study that the methodology transforms the reconfigurability requirements into a flexible and scalable system. This study can be used as a reference guide to assembly system design not only for aerospace industry but also whole assembly systems in different industry branch.