The new Airbus 380 may be the largest aircraft ever to be built, yet SKF engineers had devilishly tight constraints under which to design the bearing assembly for the horizontal tail stabilizer (HTP). The primary function of the HTP is to balance all the moments caused by the various aerodynamic and inertia forces and to provide a stable angle of incidence. A secondary function is to control the pitch of the aircraft. SKF engineers designed the failsafe hinge and shaft assembly that connects the horizontal fuselage and stabilizer and is a critical part of the HTP. To meet the loading (high) and weight (low), they employed a new, high-strength steel and titanium shaft and a bi-metal, spherical plain bearing designed to support loads up to 3,800 kN. The bearing's bronze inner ring allows a double rotation path. The plane is expected to enter service in 2005.
Producing high-quality end-production metal parts with additive manufacturing for applications like aerospace and medical requires very tightly controlled processes and materials. New standards and guidelines for machines and processes, materials, and printed parts are underway from bodies such as ASTM International.
Engineers at the University of San Diego’s Jacobs School of Engineering have designed biobatteries on commercial tattoo paper, with an anode and cathode screen-printed on and modified to harvest energy from lactate in a person’s sweat.
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