Aerospace and defence group EADS’ Innovation Works research and technology network has signed a cooperation agreement with Norway-based DolphiTech for the development of a new nondestructive testing (NDT) system based on an ultrasonic camera component used for composite inspection.
“The cooperation agreement was signed in December 2011 and we are working on the specifications and regulations for this innovation. We hope to release the first version of this system onto the market in the first quarter of 2013,” says DolphiTech CEO Dag Ronsen.
DolphiTech believes the aerospace indus- try, which is rapidly increasing its use of carbon-fibre composite materials in the design of aeroplanes, will benefit greatly from using the product.
NDT testing plays a critical role in the aero- space industry, where components are designed to be as light as possible, while continuing to perform their task. This makes NDT an essential part of the process, states DolphiTech.
EADS NDT specialist Martin Bach explains that the new system will speed up NDT procedures in manufacturing and maintenance and will help users save money and time.
“The adaptation of our novel ultrasound technology for impact assessment by EADS Innovation Works will open an attractive global market for our technology.
“The cooperation and marketing opportunities with EADS, its suppliers and customers will be valuable for DolphiTech when we launch the technology onto the aerospace market,” says DolphiTech MD Terje Melandso.
Ronsen notes that the collaboration with EADS has the potential to help DolphiTech expand beyond the aerospace industry and influence the vehicle and marine industries.
“To date, the camera is targeted at impact-damage and borehole inspection, but with certain modifications, we can address other needs and industries, such as covering large areas and deeper penetration of materials,” he says.
DolphiTech believes the quality and cost efficiency of the technology meet industry requirements and will prompt the company to venture into other industries.
Not a lot of marketing has been done on the product yet. “We have, sort of, operated under the radar on purpose because we have a very clear objective and target with our development project with EADS. Moving forward, we plan to do more customer-driven distribution and marketing.
“Every company has a different value chain in terms of objectives and, in turn, a different market, so we have to approach every client differently,” concludes Ronsen.