Curing the sealant that holds aircraft windshields in their frames can take up to 48 hours, according Lyon, France-based Sunaero (Hall 2B, Stand C140-158). This can result in maintenance specialists and their airline customers releasing aircraft back to service before sealant is fully cured. While maintenance standards allow such an early release of the aircraft and safety is not at stake, sometimes the windshield has to be sealed again after the next landing, said Fabrice Parodi, Sunaero’s sales and marketing director.
Sunero offers a solution: a process for curing (or polymerizing) sealant in about 30 minutes, instead of the usual three to 48 hours. This Windshield Rapid Curing System (WRCS), uses a wide-spectrum, far-infrared beam of low-temperature electromagnetic radiation to cure the sealant. The system is available for the Airbus A320, A330/A340, Boeing 737 and ATR 42/72.
The WRCS 28V-DC thermoreactor emitters are mounted on frames that the company has designed to fit each aircraft model’s particular windshield geometry. This allows the system to maintain a low curing temperature, which avoids any risk of damage to neighboring components, Parodi said.
The sealant is cured from the inside. Sunaero claims this prevents faults, such as micro bubbling and incomplete curing. Using a temperature probe, the WRCS control panel regulates the maximum temperature and automatically stops the equipment after the sealant is fully cured.
The WRCS frame can be set up on an aircraft “within seconds,” said Parodi. A vacuum system and an array of active suction pads keeps the frame in place during the curing process.