Search archive          Sign up for our Newsletters          Aviation Jobs
Latest Aviation News  |  Industry & Technology  |  Air Transport  |  MRO & Support  |  Aircraft Interiors  |  Editorials  |  Events Calendar  |  About UsFR
 
Aviation News The European Space Agency in the service of aviation MRO

The European Space Agency in the service of aviation MRO

Léo Barnier
28 NOV 2019 | 333 words
The European Space Agency in the service of aviation MRO
© ESA / P. de Maagt
Aircraft maintenance is not an area that we generally associated with the space sector. And yet, the European Space Agency (ESA) has shown that it can be useful in this field, or at least its facilities can. It welcomed Specto Aerospace into its European Space Technology Centre (ESTEC) at Noordwijk, in the Netherlands. The Dutch company, which specialises in composite repair, was able to test an Airbus A340 radome in ESA's HERTZ (Hybrid European Radio frequency and antenna Test Zone) anechoic chamber.

The size of the ESA's chamber enabled the two metre in diameter radome to be accommodated without difficulty. Specto Aerospace was then able to validate the equipment's electromagnetic behaviour following its structural damage repair. The MRO company told us that this is compulsory process before the equipment can be returned to service.

The radome's repairs can actually affect the operation of the plane's weather radar, as Eric Van Der Houwen, ESA antenna engineer, explains: "Sometimes a repaired radome can look good but might not perform so well in RF terms. It might be that the radome structure is absorbing too much RF energy, or triggering signal reflections or interactions that alter the shape of what should be a forward-looking signal. In this particular case, this radome requires a 'side lobe level test' - checking its sideways emissions".

"ESA is one of our reliable partners for specific aircraft parts testing", says Jeroen Mast, managing director of Specto. "Our in-house test facility is able to perform the standard transmission efficiency tests for aircraft radomes, with ESA's anechoic test facilities offering a valuable add-on to our services".

This type of operation is still rare and of course is not a priority for the European Space Agency. Eric Van Der Houwen freely admits: "We had a rare gap in our test schedule and were able to accommodate a commercial customer". All the tests on the Specto Aerospace A340 radome were carried out over one day.
Léo Barnier
Specialized journalist
Industry & Technology, Equipments, MRO


 
They made this section possible
Top stories
09 DEC 2021
The world's first Airbus A320 freighter takes off The world's first Airbus A320 freighter takes off
We knew its first flight was near, but Elbe Flugzeugwerke (EFW) was able to keep the surprise until the end. The first Airbus A320P2F (Passenger ... Continue Reading
09 DEC 2021
NYCO signs a major strategic agreement with Air France to develop sustainable aircraft lubricants NYCO signs a major strategic agreement with Air France to develop sustainable aircraft lubricants
NYCO, the French specialist in aeronautical lubricants, has signed a strategic agreement with Air France to cooperate on engine oil field service evaluation and ... Continue Reading
09 DEC 2021
New long-term agreement between Safran and SIAEC on CFM International's LEAP engines New long-term agreement between Safran and SIAEC on CFM International's LEAP engines
Safran Aircraft Engines has just signed a new 10-year engine MRO contract with SIA Engineering Company (SIAEC). Under the agreement, Singapore Airlines' MRO division will provide ... Continue Reading
09 DEC 2021
The world's first Airbus A320 freighter takes off
09 DEC 2021
NYCO signs a major strategic agreement with Air France to develop sustainable aircraft lubricants
09 DEC 2021
New long-term agreement between Safran and SIAEC on CFM International's LEAP engines
09 DEC 2021
Boeing to add two 737-800BCF conversion lines at STAECO's facility in China
09 DEC 2021
Sabena Aerospace to take over several maintenance activities from Lufthansa Technik
Top stories
 
Latest News     Industry & Technology     Air Transport     MRO & Support     Aircraft Interiors     Editorials
© 2022 Le Journal de l'Aviation - All rights reserved