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Reducing cycle time in the Aerospace Industry

Within the aerospace industry, a critical element in improving overall productivity is having the ability to reduce the cycle time of aircraft drilling applications.

Aerospace drilling, be it for wingspans, fuselage, or final assembly, is a complex process with unique requirements. Operators are expected to increase the rate at which they are drilling holes (reducing cycle time), while at the same time they also must maintain or even improve the quality of the holes they are drilling.

Keeping this in mind, we must also take into consideration the drill being used during assembly. In order to keep pace with the ever-increasing production rates of aerospace manufacturing and improve hole quality, consider Atlas Copco’s Advanced Drilling Unit power feed drills (PFD). Available in two versions, the PFD 1100 and the PFD 1500 are modular drilling units that cover a wide range of applications.

Atlas Copco PFD1100 positive feed drill application image

One-shot drilling with accuracy

Currently, mechanical fastening within the aerospace industry is still a necessity, meaning that operators are expected to drill, by hand, thousands of holes per aircraft. What would normally be a lengthy process can be shortened with the PFDs one-shot drilling and countersinking capabilities. By stacking all-metal or all-composite parts in joint position and drilling through them in a single operation, proper hole alignment is ensured, and high-quality holes are produced, all while reducing cycle time.

The PFD 1100

During quality-critical hole making, the modularity and versatility of the PFD 1100 combines to create a powerful drilling unit for all applications around the aircraft. It’s versatile enough for light-duty, high-speed drilling and heavy-duty drilling too. Built with a high-power turbine motor that provides a consistent speed during the hole making process, the drill boosts productivity and ensures a constant spindle speed in order to obtain holes of the highest quality. With one-shot drilling and countersinking capabilities, reducing cycle time in the aerospace industry is more possible than ever before.

The PFD 1500

Atlas Copco’s PFD 1500 is our stronger, more robust Advanced Drilling Unit option. Ideal for final assembly, the powerful turbine motor inside the PFD 1500 guarantees smooth, consistent drilling speeds and high precision. Cutter changes are quick, safe, and easy to do, allowing operators to spend more time drilling. This drill also comes with a Rapid Advance feature, which gives the cutter the ability to be fast-forwarded to the aircraft part, thus reducing cycle time in the aerospace industry.

Airport image to PFD leaflet

Keeping up with the industry

There’s no skirting around the fact that aerospace manufacturing is a booming industry that is expected to keep pace with rapidly increasing production rates. The ability to drill thousands of holes, each one of the absolute highest quality, in a quick and consistent amount of time is crucial to improving productivity within the aerospace industry. In order to accomplish this, operators need a drilling unit they can rely on. With the PFDs one-shot countersinking capability and high-powered turbine engines, you can expect a reduction in cycle time and excellent hole quality.

To learn more, contact Atlas Copco today.