Growing abroad

There is no doubt that CATEC has become one of the most advanced technological centres in Spain and a reference in R&D in Europe, especially in areas such as drones and unmanned systems, robotics and industry 4.0, additive manufacturing (3D printing) or non-destructive inspection, which are already marking the present and future of the aerospace industry and other important productive sectors. And not because we say it, but the results that we have achieved throughout our 11 years of history and professional trajectory talk by themselves.

We announced some days ago a new milestone in the history of FADA-CATEC, and especially in our internationalization and growth process towards foreign markets. This is no other than the first project in the field of technological developments in 3D printing outside the European continent, thanks to the collaboration with the company INVAP Argentina, which means our leap crossing the ocean to Latin America, precisely in an area of great value such as components and parts manufacturing for satellites and launchers for the space sector.

In a year in which precisely the city of Seville is assuming and leading the presidency of the Community of Ariane Cities (CVA), and Andalusia is boosting its growth in the aeronautical sector reached in the last decade, we are convinced that this new CATEC project will contribute to show the high technological and industrial capacity that our industry has and to continue encouraging our companies to keep on on this good path, betting on R&D and high added value activities.

The latest figures for the year 2017 are again clear and consolidate Andalusia as a region that has not stopped growing in turnover, employment and exports in the aerospace sector, and that already faces the future with new challenges and illusions. The new strategic plan of the sector must be a key element in all this, and the base for the Andalusian aerospace sector to continue growing abroad, with the support of all the agents involved and with the R&D and the promotion of innovation as main allies. Only this way will strengthen our position as a of the fastest growing industries in the European and international level, and with better prospects for the coming years.

Joaquín Rodríguez Grau
Director of CATEC


Shearografia Laser: state-of-the-art technology for real-time inspections of materials and components

This technique is used to inspect adhesive-bonded joints in carbon fibre, sandwich panels with carbon fibre-reinforced polymer very common in Aeronautics

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Shearografia Laser: state-of-the-art technology for real-time inspections of materials and components
Among the variety of technologies carried out by CATEC, there is the Laser Shearography (LS) an optic interferometry method providing real-time important inspection results which is being positively used in sectors like Aeronautics, Energy and Naval, among others.

This technology uses the coherent, monochromatic properties of laser light to generate speckle patterns. The component to be inspected is illuminated by the laser. The surface reflects the light creating a speckle pattern at the viewing plane, which can be processed to provide information such as the presence of defects, material degradation or residual stress. The system records the speckle pattern from an unstressed component surface. The surface is then stressed and a new speckle pattern generated, recorded and stored.

The computer subtracts the speckle patterns from each other, thus forming an image made up of series of characteristic black and white fringes, representing the surface strain in the area of interest. If a defect such as a void or disbond exists, this will affect the surface strain and the defect can be revealed by the fringe pattern developed.

By applying a small load, the material will deform. A nonuniform material quality will generate a nonuniform movement of the surface of the test object. A new shearing image is recorded at the loaded state and is compared with the sheared image before load. If a flaw is present, it will be seen. Particularly, the LS technique is used to inspect adhesive-bonded joints, sandwich panels with carbon fibre-reinforced polymer very common in Aeronautics.

This NDT techniques is non-contact and can by applied in several industrial sectors for the detection of surface and subsurface defects, and can be also applied to a wide range of materials (like composites and metals). They also allow the inspection of large areas and detects failures, flaws, indentations and cracks by impacts originated while repairing, etc.

This technology is at the interested entities and companies’ disposal. For further information, you can contact Fernando Lasagni, responsible for the Area of Materials and Processes.

May 29th 2012
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