COMPACT is to look at manufacturing induced part distortion of aerospace alloy components. It is estimated that tens of millions of Euros are spent every year in an attempt to either avoid or remedy distortion in components. Consequently this is an expens ive problem for the aerospace sector that offers a significant business and intellectual challenge. Part distortion is a function of residual stress and is caused by the complex relationships between material processing, component design and manufacture. The work programme has been developed around these three fundamental streams of research and consequently adopts a truly concurrent approach.Two further research streams will enable the weight of research findings to be effectively applied to problem so lving. These are finite element modelling and knowledge integration. Research will be used to gain a greater degree of understanding across engineering disciplines and create a knowledge base using a process-orientated approach. Finite element modelling will be used to develop three-dimensional functionality that will enable multidisciplinary simulations to be undertaken. The knowledge integration work will use this technology in order to assist or guide cross-functional engineering teams in the decision making process.The work will eventually enable costs savings to be made in manufacturing through the minimisation of 'scrap', rework, concessions and the expensive re-processing of aluminium. Through looking at design in the light of residual stress it is expected that the design work will enable engineers to optimise geometrical shapes and produce lighter components and hence aircraft. This will lead to further savings in manufacturing and the running cost of aircraft. COMPACT offers many opportunities for value and novelty to the European research Area; truly concurrent research in the supply chain or extended enterprise.
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