RUAG Australia has signed a contract with US company VRC Metal Systems to deliver a mobile supersonic particle deposition (SPD) unit for US Navy trials in 2019.
RUAG Australia has been working with the SPD Technology (also known as cold spray) successfully for many years. The SPD technology is a key technology for cost and time optimised repair of structural components on aircraft. Since 2015, under US collaborative programs, RUAG Australia has been working with US Defense-sponsored partners to evaluate and assess the feasibility of enhancing the performance of the mobile SPD unit.
Together with VRC Metals Systems, supportability by incorporating elements of the US developed VRC Raptor cold spray system was analysed. The outcome of this collaboration was that the mobile system was viable and had performance equal to the larger fixed cold spray system.
Due to this success, VRC Metal Systems entered into a partnership with RUAG Australia to deliver a mobile SPD unit integrating elements of their ruggedised system for US Navy field trials.
In addition to the mobile SPD unit, RUAG Australia will also provide the operational and maintenance manuals as well as one month’s training to VRC Metal Systems employees in Rapid City, South Dakota. RUAG Australia has been working closely with VRC Metal Systems for a number of years and is continuing to work with VRC Metal Systems to establish a long-term relationship that will support the transfer of shared technology between parties and also provide a successful business outcome as SPD/Cold Spray applications continue to expand.
RUAG Australia is a major industry research centre for the development and application of powder deposition technologies focusing on both SPD and laser assisted deposition (LAD) for Defence applications. These technologies offer a number of exciting and cost-effective outcomes, particularly in the areas of geometry restoration and corrosion protection.
In addition, these technologies enable the restoration of corroded/damaged metallic components/structures to an acceptable level of structural integrity and functionality. RUAG Australia maintains and operates a fixed and mobile SPD capability as well as a fixed LAD capability.
Servicing aircraft and helicopters throughout their entire life cycle, the company’s core competencies include maintenance, repair and overhaul services, upgrades, and the development, manufacturing and integration of subsystems.
RUAG is an authorised service centre for OEMs such as Airbus Helicopters, Bell, Cirrus, Diamond, Dassault Aviation, Embraer, Leonardo, Piaggio, Sikorsky, Textron Aviation, and Piper, as well as a service centre for Bombardier, Viking and MD Helicopters. RUAG Aviation is also a partner to the Swiss Armed Forces and other international air forces.