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Technical Paper

The Next Generation of Automated Hole Cold Expansion

In an effort to simplify and speed up manufacturing time for aircraft structure, a pure mechanical system has been developed by Fatigue Technology Inc. (FTI) to perform the Split Sleeve Cold Expansion (SsCx™) process to fastener holes. Historically, fastener holes requiring cold working for fatigue life enhancement are cold worked with a system which requires a manual hydraulic puller. This system works well and has been in place for more than 30 years. This paper will discuss a new type of system that uses a simplified mechanical-only process that does not require hydraulic pneumatic or electrical systems. This new type of Automated Cold Expansion™ (AtCx™) puller unit has recently been fitted to an automated work cell that machines aircraft sub-components. This new cold expansion puller utilizes only simple rotary motion and converts it to a linear motion. The puller can be fitted to any kind of automated work cell, NC machine, or drilling and riveting equipment.