In aerospace, where foreign object damage (FOD) is a real risk, Zeroshift has a solution – and the company is showcasing the next-generation Intelligent Tool Control (ITC) at Farnborough.

The cost of damage to an engine in a FOD incident can easily exceed 20% of its new cost, says Zeroshift ITC Manager Paul MacGregor.

“It is clear that FOD is a very expensive problem. While some of this is due to foreign objects ingested at airports, a great deal is due to tools left in planes during build and maintenance. We are aware of one engine manufacturer who loses $5,000 worth of tools every month in just one of its plants,” he says.

“Multiplied out across a global industry worth over $250 billion per annum in aircraft manufacture and repair, and that is an extremely expensive set of lost tools before you even start to ask which engine were they left in! That’s the problem ITC is designed to solve.”

The Zeroshift ITC controller is paired with a cabinet containing tool-silhouette cut outs. Each tool cavity is equipped with an optical sensor which automatically detects the removal or replacement of a tool. To access a tool, users must enter a PIN via keypad or swipe a card.

ITC is already deployed in aerospace, supporting tool control and anti-FOD procedures for companies such as Rolls Royce in Derby, where the system is installed at the customer delivery centre.

Source: Flight International