Other news you will love
About agile methodologies 🔄
Explore the agile methodology to see if it fits you and your team's strategies
The shift to a decarbonised transportation sector
Understanding the shift towards Transport Decarbonization
The aerospace industry develops some of the most important and complex technology. It leverages technologies to create powerful and highly sophisticated systems, both that help planes and rockets navigate and other technologies that help planes and rockets achieve faster speeds with fewer resources.
Technology is extremely important to the sector and the sector is extremely important to technology as it provides a lot of innovations and also tests a lot of complex high tech.
This article will explore the aerospace industry, why it relies on technology, and how it implements it to achieve its results.
Aerospace collectively refers to the atmosphere and outer space, the industry is rather diverse, mixing in together commercial, industrial and military applications. The field recruits engineers both in aeronautics, astronautics, and research, design, production, operation, maintenance as the creation and maintenance of an aircraft or spacecraft involves the work of numerous organizations.
Technology in the aerospace industry, then, refers to the construction, testing, and maintenance of aircraft and space vehicles. Technicians may be involved in the assembly, service, testing, operation, and repair of systems associated with dependable or reusable space launch vehicles and related ground support equipment.
The industry is moving and focusing its effort on building technology that can make aircrafts more fuel-efficient and make them autonomous. These technologies also benefit the space part of the industry that tries to reach further planets and go on longer missions.
Let’s now look at the reasons why the industry relies on technology to develop.
As the industry tries to go further, faster, technology helps the sector innovate and use their fuel as efficiently as possible; this means finding both new chemical compounds and finding better architectures that help propel the vehicle.
This part of the industry leverages both simulation software and powerful computers to figure out what architectures are most powerful and which ones to use.
People have thought of autonomous aircraft for a while now, drones are starting to make this a reality by embarking on technology that helps them understand where they are and what actions to take. The main use of drones is now military but the commercial sector is starting to take hold of it. The industry is starting to develop autonomous drones for photography.
Technology helps make this a reality by going even further and adding speech recognition features. These drones respond to your voice and can take action based on what you said. This could for example be: “Take a picture”, “Go higher”, etc.
Another aspect of the aerospace industry is to try and lengthen the time an astronaut spends in space. This mixes various fields of research such as the food, health, and chemical industry to create technology that can help humans survive in space.
The industry faces a lot of hurdles such as the lack of oxygen, sunlight, and gravity which makes astronauts’ bones decay over time, influences their mental state, and prevents them from eating a balanced diet.
The industry relies on a lot of sensors as it needs measurements to guide its vehicles. Technology helps to develop those sensors, both in their implementation and in their internal mechanisms. Technology helps create more precise instruments by using electronic components.
Robustness is also of importance as these tools are supposed to either fly above the sky or into space, survive extreme temperatures and withstand incredible pressures.
Technology helps the industry develop its innovations in general. The best part is that these innovations directly benefit the public. Ready-to-go foods for example have largely benefited from NASA’s innovations.
They aimed to create microwavable foods to provide a varied, healthy diet to astronauts in space. They ended up developing much better methods of dehydrating food and making food microwaveable. Most of the innovations in the aerospace industry are beneficial to the world’s population as a whole.
Governments, therefore, give them access to technology and resources to innovate, hoping that their research will have some benefit for their population.
Now that we understand the reasons why technology is important, let’s look at a couple of technologies in the industry and how they’re used.
Material science, and particularly the introduction of composite materials has completely revolutionized the industry, making aircrafts much lighter while being resistant. This innovation has helped the industry achieve its goals of traveling further and faster.
Composite materials work by reinforcing an initial material through the addition of a mesh in the material itself. This allows the composite material to benefit from the strength of the mesh and the small weight of the initial material.
As spaceships and satellites go on long missions in space, most of them rely on solar power as their sole source of energy. Space agencies around the world have spent a lot of resources to improve their solar panels. They’ve achieved this by rearranging the architecture of their solar panels and finding better materials that are better at collecting heat from the sun.
These innovations, once again have benefits outside the industry by giving other industries access to more efficient power sources. This has allowed the creation of highly powerful solar farms and the creation of fully autonomous airplanes that only use the sun as their power source.
Overall, the aerospace industry develops a lot of important technology, both for flying vehicles and the public. The industry focuses on developing faster vehicles that use fewer resources. Instruments and measurements are also a central aspect of the industry as it is used in almost every aspect of a vehicle. The last trend for the industry is the creation of autonomous vehicles. Technology is used to make vehicles smarter, embarking features for autonomous flight.