What are the pros and challenges when using honeycomb in aviation interior components design and manufacturing? Siim Raasuke, Production Supervisor at Magnetic Creative, shares his insights.
What are the reasons why honeycomb is such a popular material for interior parts productions?
Honeycomb is indeed quite versatile and commonly used in interior parts production as it is very stiff and strong material - but at the same time also light which is important for aircraft. Due to the stiffness it can withstand heavier loads without being damaged. Additionally, for interior parts manufacturers, it is quite convenient material, too, as it comes as a sheet with different thicknesses – thus for certain parts and elements production it is also pretty easy to use in manufacturing – however, that is only the case if the components in productions does not require extensive bending or shapeshifting.
What are the challenges, faced by the manufacturing team, when using honeycomb?
If the component in production requires a lot of bending, then it turns to be a bit more challenging as the material is quite stiff. It will need many cuts to be made into the skin of the plate. With these cuts into correct places it can be bent around the tooling, that has been especially made for the component, and can be fixed into place using different adhesives that have been approved by DOA. However, all these challenges are welcome by the manufacturing team as it gives the opportunity to look for out-of-the-box solutions.
What products Magnetic Creative has already produced from this material?
One of the products we have produced from honeycomb has been foldable table for the VIP aircraft. Also, we have been producing lavatory mirror cupboards, and also currently working on stowage box production.
There are quite many items in aircrafts nowadays that can be manufactured of this type of material - for example,most of the galley modules are produced by this material. Also there are toilet modules, flooring panels etc. – and this is a good indication that honeycomb is versatile material that has a lot of benefits.