PLATFORM: F-5 E / F
PROGRAM: Aero-Structure Reconstruction
PROBLEM: Canopies on aging fighters are constantly being opened and closed, left open while on runway before and after take-off and landing. Costs for replacing complete canopies exceed most operators’ budgets.
SOLUTION: COC Aerospace has developed a reconstruction program for single and dual seat fighters including F-5, T-38 and A-37 aircraft. Using a combination of Laser Trackers and Photogrammetry, COC captures the actual dimensions of the removed canopy. Using advanced tooling fixtures that incorporate photogrammetry targets, COC technicians locate each individual canopy’s unique dimensional characteristics. Each canopy is disassembled with the Laser Tracker and Photogrammetry equipment capturing each component part’s location down to exacting detail. Tolerances are held to within 0.005”. Fasteners are removed 10 times faster than conventional removal using EDM EDrills from Perfect Point EDM. After the front frame and transparency are removed, the portable video borescope cameras video record the internal cavities within the canopy’s internal structure looking for corrosion or damage. The main components of the canopy – front frame, rear frame, fairings, beams, angles, and brackets – and the overall structure and undergo complete NDI & NDT testing using the latest Ultrasonic, Phased Array & Eddy Current Array Systems. COC prepares a detailed Inspection Report including a recommended Reconstruction Proposal. The Reconstructions includes all new fasteners, bearings, seals and hardware from approved and certified sources. Cycle times to generate the Reconstruction Proposal is 45-60 days. Most canopies are returned to service in under 180 days.
Cost savings exceeds 50%.