Aerospace Handling Equipment
Eadon Consulting were employed by Manthorpe Engineering to develop a concept and detailed design for a new piece of equipment for EADS Astrium. Astrium needed a platform to help move satellites around a clean room environment during their manufacture. The satellites could weigh up 3,500kg and were up to 3m high. The platform needed to support this, as well as making it possible to be pushed around the clean room using an electric tug.
A concept was developed that provided a standard mounting interface for their satellites, that could be easily changed in the future without having to replace the entire platform. In addition to this, it was possible to configure the platform in a number of different ways to assist it being manoeuvred into tight space within the clean room.
A simple leg jacking system was designed that enabled the platform to be lifted off the ground and levelled. This meant it could be turned into a stable working platform giving access to the satellite. The legs could be lowered using a simple socket and ratchet spanner.
The clean room environment produced a number of design challenges. Consideration had to be given to the use of dry lubricants and bearings to ensure the clean room was not contaminated with grease. In addition to this, the platform was designed to make it easy to clean and maintain in the future.
Eadon Consulting were responsible for the concept development of this item, as well as the detailed design of the platform. Due to the delicate and valuable nature of the platforms payload, the design had to be rigorously justified and a number of different fault scenarios identified and accommodated.