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Aircraft Floor Heating, New Breakthroughs in Hybridizing Composites

What we do

We enable smart surface technology, we conceptualize, develop and manufacture smart heating foils. By combining functional 4D printed surfaces, with membrane sensors, and micro-ECU’s at the component level, we enable surfaces to interact with their environment.

New Product Launch, Aircraft Floor Heating

ATT advanced thermal technologies is proud to announce that we have successfully passed the high requirements of the aerospace industry to launch a breakthrough product, the first on the market to provide functional surface heating within hybrid advanced composites technology. ATT is now the only tier (ii) supplier of functional heating laminated into the composite floor tiles of the Airbus A330. What does this mean for the upcoming trickle-down effect for the rest of the composite manufacturing industry?

Aircraft Floor Heating Systems

Functional Surface Technology for Composites Industry

The composites industry is already over $100 bn a year, and growing strongly as there is an unsatisfied need for ultra-lightweight performance materials allowing significant savings of energy resources. As lightweight performance converges on the limits of mechanical performance, research and development looks towards functional ways to add value; through hybridizing composites.

We use high-resolution screen-printing technology, to build up controlled thickness layers that can distribute high power densities, and remain stable even under high loads while delivering fast response. Combined with our three-pronged approach -combining electronics engineering design, with functional materials science, and molecular physics,- we can knit the best attributes together to form a composite-microstructure that delivers the required functions such as heating and temperature or humidity / ice sensing.

Hybrid Composite Functional Layer

Hybrid Composites, The use of functional layers as an interlaminate within composite surfaces.

Micro-Composites, and Smart Surfaces

Our smart foils are systems of micro-thickness layers composited onto base substrates and consisting of functional inks, power matrices, membrane sensors, and pressure distribution textures to withstand industrial integration and lamination processes.

Our approach is completely unique, we aren’t just building up a heating foil, we are using controlled heights of multilayered monolithic structures. These add structural texture at the µm level to create more stable attributes of a functional surface membrane. We have explored many iterations of dual surface textures and cellular layouts to optimize integration methods in scalable production processes.

4D printing is the build up of functional surface technology directly into the foil layer

The functional inks we have selected for the heating foils convert energy at 100% efficiency and change phase triggering a steep PTC effect.

We use CFD analysis to qualify not only mis-use case and hotspot prevention, but also to determine the stack positioning and localized strain areas that may need to be compensated in the design of the foil or the position of the stack relative to the neutral plane of bending.

As an example of our sensor technology that was developed initially for the aerospace industry, our membrane sensors are based on resistive and capacitive through-printed meanders layered into our heating foils. Integrated together with our Powerlogic® technology, we discern the fingerprint of a signal that represents either the water film thickness or droplet size and even the type of ice formation.

Using this sensing feedback technology, we can power up the minimum heat required to achieve the desired result. For example, activate the function only if there is condensation on the surface or thaw just enough water film to release ice from the surface of an aerofoil.

4D functional surfaces, integral functionality laid down in the microstructure of the heating foil build up

Development Projects for Hybrid Composites

If you are a composites materials manufacturer looking to hybridize your portfolio and offer new USPs, then we are your ideal technology partners. By working with us as a “Horizontal Industry Partner”, we can help you to increase your market share. We can strengthen your “push” presentation of innovation up chain, leveraging early awareness. By integrating our technology with your composites, you will be able to to present more “systems based solutions” to inspire your clients, rather than relying on the usual competitive bidding pool of offering “parts based solutions”.

Green Technology

We believe in enabling technology whilst being responsible for the environment. Our additive manufacturing process involves only safe materials such as carbon and allows the production of smart foils with very little waste. Additive technology reduces our impact on the environment, not just in the choice of materials, but in the optimization for minimal waste and energy consuming processes that support our duty for producing in a more sustainable and responsible way.

If you wish to see an example of our Aircraft Floor Heating System developed together with one of our partners, please download our “Aircraft Floor Heating Data Sheet” Here.

If you are interested in working with us, give us a call under +43 664 1651121 or simply email us at hello@thermaltech.at

Author Bio:
Juliana Payson BEng (Hons) Composite Materials Engineering
Business Development
Juliana is a composites engineer by education and has a diverse entrepreneurial background. She joined ATT in its start-up phase emigrating from America back to Europe as she identified the potential of ATT’s functional printing technology in combination with its integrated team mindset. In her personal time, she pursues high-performance athletics, embracing the challenge of all of life’s hurdles.