Arnd Sliwa, Director Product Management of the Business Unit Aviation at VINCORION, explains the innovation behind the newly developed heated and illuminated composite structures
60 Second Q&A: Jenoptik
VINCORION presents forward-looking composite solutions for aircraft.
Q: So are you bringing anything new and exciting along to the show this year?
A: Yes, indeed. We are excited to introduce our new heated floor panels for door and galley areas to the market. A new generation when it comes to lightweight heating solutions that are corrosion-resistant, waterproof, and low-maintenance. What’s more, we are happy to present a design study for heated and illuminated multi-layer composites in aircraft. Customers can experience by means of an original cabin segment the impact of “intelligent” composite structures on a pleasant atmosphere.
Q: What is new about these innovations?
A: With our heated floor panels we are for the first time using a composite panel structure with a special processed core and new PTC heat coating. This design principle increases the resistance of the floor panel and, in combination with the self-regulating heat coating, ensures reliable and safe functioning. The circumferential, closed fiberglass edge enhances durability and, together with a special aluminum alloy used in shipbuilding, offers dependable protection against corrosion.
Q: What do you think VINCORION can offer differently from your competitors?
A: So far industry has been using conventional resistance heaters with heating wires. VINCORION’s new heated floor panels utilize heating lacquer not seen on aircraft before. At its core lies the principle of the positive temperature coefficient (PTC), a material with superior conductivity at lower temperatures. A current flows between the electrodes and warms the lacquer in between up to 65°C. PTC heating lacquer contains Nano soot particles and its temperature range can be individually adjusted. With rising temperatures the material expands and the electrical resistance rises, which leads to a lower current flow and the lacquer cools down. This principle protects the heating element against damage up to smoke emission and fire, as has occurred before.
Q: Do you have already proven installation on airplanes today?
A: After certification and licensing early this year serial production of the new heated floor panels has already started. The new heating system will be implemented into existing and into new aircrafts in 2019.
Q: How do you spot opportunities for innovation?
A: Go to the source: the customer you hope to target. We have listened to the problems aircraft manufactures have and searched for a solution. The result is the heated floor panel that has been created in two years of development time. The new floor panel has only few similarities with its predecessor product and eliminates the prior causes of damage at their roots. To achieve this it was necessary to leave trodden paths and think about functions and procedures in a new way, it was almost a garage-like atmosphere similar to a start-up.
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