A Novel Power Skiving Tool
Small Business Information
P.O. Box 71, Hanover, NH, -
AbstractABSTRACT: The skiving of gap and fastener fill materials is a critical process to maintain the proper Outer Mold Line (OML) of the F-35 during aircraft manufacture. This process must be completed for both long gaps that have been over-filled and for fasteners that have been filled with thermoplastic plugs. The skiving process must be completed to strict flushness and geometric requirements despite the complex and curved geometry of the part surface. Currently, the skiving process is completed using hand tools such as razor blades and represents a significant hand-touch operation for the manufacturing of the F-35 aircraft. Our innovation is a novel automated Flexible Power Skiver (FPS) that couples a compact, remotely driven, hand-held device with a unique flexible tool tip. This tool will enable effective gap filler material removal while conforming to the local surface geometry, thus providing a means to meet flushness requirements on difficult surface geometries. During the Phase I project, we will assemble the proof-of-concept FPS system, complete testing on relevant materials and geometries, and design the system for integration on the manufacturing floor. During Phase II, we will complete the FPS design, integration, testing, and transition. BENEFIT: Gap fills are required in numerous commercial applications including caulking, grouting, and durable goods manufacture. Because our technology enables selective, cost-effective gap filler removal, we expect that numerous commercial applications would benefit from the application of our innovative FPS.
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