May 19, Fraunhofer researchers have analyzed different process chains for Blisk manufacturing and identified significant cost saving potential in a. Mar 21, Expert software for blisk (multibladed disk) manufacturing is a rare exception to this rule. From the point of view of CAM, all blisks are very much. Not long ago, many manufacturers were happy just to be able to completely machine a blisk from a solid successfully, whether it was done efficiently or not.

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A blisk mankfacturing disk is an aeroengine component consisting of a rotor disk and multiple blades in a single part. Replacing the traditional assembly of an individual disk and multiple removable blades, blisks have continued to grow in popularity since their introduction in the mids. Also known as integrally bladed rotors Manufacturihgblisks are usually machined from a solid piece of material. Using blisks in the compressors and fans of modern turbojet engines improves performance and negates the need to assemble the rotor disk and blades.

Vital components can be produced in a single setup on the same machine tool. Due to their complicated shapes, blisk machining requires the use of multi-axis machine tools and advanced CNC software.

Blisk – Wikipedia

Such machining demands effective and reliable cutting tools. Because the majority of blisk machining consists of milling, the quality of the milling cutters is paramount. Usually, blisks are produced from hard-to-cut titanium Ti or nickel-based alloys Ni-alloysso the milling cutters used need to meet stringent productive and fail-safe machining requirements.

Iscar uses premium submicron and ultra-fine carbide substrates, combined with nano-layer physical vapor deposition PVD coating technology and advanced post-coating SUMO TEC treatment, to improve tool impact strength and wear resistance for longer life and enhanced working characteristics. Blisk milling begins with rough slot milling, so Iscar has developed ECK-M solid carbide endmills with a geometry of reinforced cutting edges to efficiently mill titanium.

The system reduces setup time and can be configured in more than 15, ways from standard shanks and heads. If necessary, extensions can be used. Available shank materials include:. In some blisk rough-slot milling, such as machining Ni-alloys, a trochoidal tool path is the most productive. Seven flutes with different helix angles enable high stock removal rates.

High-quality surface finish and predictable, long tool life are vital in finish-milling blisks. The cutting tool often works with a high overhang, raising stability requirements. Productive milling of blisks is based on: The past 15 years have been intriguing for aerospace, from a commercial and a technological standpoint.

The world was introduced to the first predominately composite aircraft, the Eurofighter, in Meanwhile, commercial aerospace witnessed the entry-into-service of two revolutionary aircraft: Engine original equipment manufacturers OEMs engaged in their own technology play.

These innovative engines have prompted Boeing and Airbus to shelve plans for a clean-sheet narrow body replacement for a more immediate re-engined solution.

What can the world expect for the next 10 to 15 years? The total material consumed in annual military and commercial aircraft production and maintenance, repair, and overhaul MRO is approximatelytons inaccording to ICF International.

Two thirds is associated with Boeing and Airbus.

Due to inherent inefficiencies in the production process, it takes an estimated 6 lb. This is the buy-to-fly ratio per industry parlance.

Manuufacturing pre-form process forging, casting, extrusion, machined plate incurs a considerable loss of material. Most alloys have fairly high buy-to-fly ratios, in contrast to carbon fiber reinforced polymer CFRPwhich is closer to 1. The industry has placed increased emphasis on closed-loop revert programs and near-net shape manufacturing processes.


Near net also has the advantage of minimizing the machining of difficult-to-machine superalloy and titanium alloys. It is anticipated to increase 6. Titanium alloy will grow at 4. Aluminum and steel alloy growth rates are projected to be flat during the next decade.

The next clean-sheet design for air transport aircraft will likely combine a metal possibly aluminum-lithium airframe with a CFRP wing and empennage. The justification for using CFRP — a considerably more expensive material — for the wing includes weight, geometry, finish, and stiffness for a high aspect ratio. A challenge of CFRP structures is damage detection and repair — reasons for metal fuselages that are subject to impact damage from ramp service vehicles.

These aircraft will not appear until the end of next decade due to efforts to re-engine both Boeing MAX and Airbus Aneo. Next-generation materials include advanced aluminum-lithium and various derivatives of and series heat-treated aluminum alloy. The Federal Aviation Administration FAA has certified more alloys within the past decade than it has in the previous five; mainly these custom aluminum alloys.

Fiber reinforced aluminum is also under investigation. Research emphasis for non-metals surrounds out-of-autoclave thermoset composites and thermoplastic extrusions, such as those for stringers.

Difficulty in machining and high cost of production are barriers for their wide-spread adoption. This material has helped the company achieve the highest recorded combined compressor and turbine temperatures with the ADVENT military engine. Rolls Royce is testing CMCs for application in shrouds, then static structures, and eventually in rotating parts. The industry is considering applications for turbine disks.

Titanium-aluminide TiAl is as strong as many superalloys yet half the weight, but it is difficult to process due to low ductility. This process allows for complex internal geometry for cooling, and minimizes the material to be removed during machining. Rolls Royce is evaluating TiAl turbine blades for its next generation Trent engine. Powder metallurgy mitigates inhomogeneous microstructure that typically arises during the casting or wrought process. Historically, aerospace applications for gas atomized powders have been for coatings and isothermally forged disks, a technology developed in the s.

Each engine OEM has its own proprietary powder. The emphasis now is on additive manufacturing applications, mainly using titanium and superalloys, with parts in engines and aerostructure.

New powders are being developed, with manufacturers focusing on cost reduction and qualify control for larger batch production. In the engine cold section, the primacy of titanium fan blades is being challenged. Rolls Royce has also announced plans to include a carbon-titanium composite fan for its next-generation engine.

Less mass translates into less rotational kinetic energy. Moreover, the weight savings to an engine cantilevered on the wing means even greater weight savings for the engine pylon and wing structure.

In general, significant new material development is unlikely during the next decade. The staggering cost overrun of the development and execution and struggling profitability of the A program ensure both OEMs stay focused on incremental gain.

Aviation is a conservative industry. The last decade was exceptional. OEMs will now harvest existing technologies — incumbents and emerging competitors alike. Bill Bihlman is the founder and president of Aerolytics LLC, a boutique management consultancy that specializes in aerospace.

He can be reached at bihlman aerolyticsllc. Every good manufacturing company focuses heavily on — one might even say obsesses over — quality control. The final product delivered to the customer must be perfect and always on time.


But no business can operate totally independently. To ensure the perfect final product, you need an outstanding and well-managed supply chain. So how do you ensure the many businesses supplying your company, possibly from all over the world, consistently meet your demanding standards? You must closely and routinely audit the work of your suppliers. Every good manufacturer will not only carry out regular internal audits but will also execute supplier audits to ensure quality control processes are being properly implemented.

Bliwk suppliers, equally, should carry out their own internal audits. Managing suppliers internationally becomes more straightforward every year.

AML wins plaudits from Rolls-Royce for blisk manufacture

Through means such as teleconferencing, videoconferencing, and intranet portals, not every review meeting needs to be face-to-face. While audits are essential, be wary if you feel your suppliers are reluctantly meeting your standards. You should seek to cultivate a long-term partnership, with suppliers knowing that if your business grows, their manugacturing will expand, too.

Constantly changing suppliers simply disrupts the flow of your work. Similarly, a high manufactruing of suppliers can create costly logistical nightmares, so streamline your supply chain to ensure the most efficient flow. When you set up facilities in a new location, your key suppliers may establish operations in that location as well, eager to exploit the logistical benefits. Rapid and comprehensive information sharing is vital. Through a secure intranet portal, you can ensure your international suppliers can instantly access the information they need.

Opportunities are extensive, from process checklists to quality manuals online that save reprinting costs every time a change is made. All suppliers can be alerted immediately and simultaneously when a customer provides new specifications or a delivery date moves. You can also use the portal to support your mxnufacturing process, ensuring suppliers can see how their performance is measuring against the agreed key performance indicators KPIs. Sharing information is also key when expanding your business.

There is no value in gaining new contracts only to realize your supply chain cannot keep pace with the growth. While change rarely happens overnight in most sectors of manufacturing, making sure your supply chain is thoroughly briefed ahead of any likely changes to your business is always a good idea.

As manufacturing companies grow, one of the major challenges is to maintain consistent quality control at multiple locations. Overseeing operations at just one facility may not always be easy, and when that oversight needs to apply to facilities across the country or internationally, the challenges inevitably increase and intensify. Quality of operation, and ultimately product, can never be sacrificed, which means expansion can feel frightening.

Nonetheless, the company that takes an intelligent approach to growth can achieve all the benefits without risking quality.

Press Release

Expansion through acquisition is a smart move for any company manufacturijg cares about quality control. Bllisk company can undertake a program of sub-contracting to offer customers an increased range of services and products, which could be described as a form of expansion. The customer also enjoys benefits such as a single point of contact. Quality should not suffer — every good manufacturer will closely and consistently audit the work of sub-contractors.

There is no better way of ensuring the highest level of quality than through your own staff operating your own machinery in your own locations.