Heatcon is providing the army with nearly 200 portable hot bonders, which will be used to repair the composite structures on military aircraft.
“Numerous circumstances can cause an aircraft to be not operational,” Heatcon president Eric Casterline explained.
“Besides hostile fire, for example, during military operations, impact from ground vehicles and foreign object debris are common sources of damage. Repairs to composite parts must follow a schedule of heat and pressure application, known as a cure cycle, for a repair to be sound – that is what our equipment provides.”
The hot bonders developed for this contract are said to retain functions similar to those of larger, more traditional equipment, while offering portability through the addition of DC battery-powered capabilities.
“The smaller size and lighter weight make these bonders easier to use in remote areas, and improve response time for technicians in the field,” says Heatcon founder Howard Banasky.
The equipment has a display that lets mechanics monitor the cure cycle of the composites used in repairs, which is important for assuring that the resulting component meets airworthiness requirements.
“Speed, rapid response and visually assuring that cure cycle parameters are being followed are absolutely essential in this whole process,” Banasky notes.
Deliveries begin this year, and shipping of the order is expected to be complete by spring 2012.
Along with the portable hot bonders, Heatcon will also provide the army with silicone heat blankets, tap hammers and vacuum-bagging consumable materials.