GLOBAL AEROSPACE TRENDS
Increased Commercial Aviation Traffic / Sustainability / Composite Materials and Advanced Metals / Alternative Fuels / Digitalization / 3d Printing Technologies / Product Lifecycle Management
INCREASED COMMERCIAL AVIATION TRAFFIC
Commercial air traffic has doubled every 15 years since the 1980s. This growth rate is expected to continue over the next 20 years, with an annual increase of approximately 4.6%. International cargo transport is also expected to grow, by approximately 4.4% on average each year.
As a result, demand for commercial aircraft that are larger (more seats per aircraft) and more efficient is expected to grow.
More and more companies are implementing production methods that are more environmentally friendly, and have begun to manufacture greener products as well. Regulations have also changed in recent years and now focus on limiting damage to the environment.
Sustainability goals have become an integral part of many company and organizational policies, and are trickled down from the OEMs through the entire value chain.
Recently, the Israeli company Ashot Ashkelon Industries collaborated with two Italian companies (EFESTO and C.F.M. Air) to develop a hybrid propulsion system (HPS).
COMPOSITE MATERIALS AND ADVANCED METALS
Aerospace companies are on the lookout for new materials with novel characteristics such as high rigidity, light weight and high durability in order to reduce aircraft weight, conserve fuel, reduce pollutant emissions and more.
The aerospace industry comprises approximately one-third of global demand for composite materials. Analysts expect an 8%-13% increase in composite materials sales by 2020, due to demand from the commercial aircraft segment alone.
Leading Israeli companies: Kanfit, Aero Sol, and Plasan Sasa.
Alternative fuels are used to reduce the aerospace industry’s dependence on oil and its exposure to oil price fluctuations, and to reduce pollutant emissions.
The main challenge is to produce alternative fuels, which currently cost three times the price of regular fuel, on a large enough scale and at prices that are competitive and attractive for commercial airlines.
The Fuel Choices Initiative, Israel's national program for alternative fuels and means of transportation, aims to establish Israel as a center of know-how and industry in alternative fuels and smart mobility, serving as a showcase to the world in these two fields.
Digitalization can be used to optimize performance and lower costs both in aviation and in production. For example, in aviation it can improve communication between aircraft and ground control and shorten overall flight time; in production, it can help streamline production, improve product quality and upgrade associated services.
The Boeing 777 and 787 airframes were developed using virtual design methods that significantly reduced time to market by more than 50%.
X-Sight, for example, is an Israeli company that developed systems already integrated in several airports around the world.
Leading Israeli companies: IAI, Nexus IT Solutions, TAT Technologies, Elmo Motion Control, and Astronautics CA.
3D PRINTING TECHNOLOGIES
3D printing technologies are expected to dramatically change the industry value chain. Digital supply will replace physical product supply: instead of supplying precise, finished components, suppliers will sell raw materials and design data.
This change may result in fewer production sites, less shipping, enhanced manufacturing possibilities for component manufacturers and more.
The Israeli companies Elbit and Cyclone initiated the establishment of an Israeli consortium called Atid (Future), for the joint development of generic 3D printing technologies for titanium aircraft components.
Leading Israeli companies: Landa Corporation, Scodix, DigiFlex, XJet, Nano Dimension and Massivit 3D.
PRODUCT LIFECYCLE MANAGEMENT
Better product lifecycle management can improve aircraft production processes and product quality while saving time and resources
Product lifecycle management will optimize the maintenance stage and streamline routine servicing of the aircraft, reducing the extent of unplanned service by 20%-40%.