AW169 Composite Tailplane Technology Wins Innovation Award
The AgustaWestland AW169 represents a new generation of helicopter technology, and the multinational companies that designed and manufactured its innovative thermoplastic composite horizontal tailplane: Fokker Aerostructures (Netherlands), AgustaWestland (Italy), TenCate Advanced Composites (Netherlands) and Ticona (Germany), are being celebrated with the prestigious JEC innovation award, which will be presented at the opening ceremony of the JEC Composites Show, to be held in Paris on March 12.
The award-winning thermoplastic composite horizontal tailplane is a main load-bearing primary structure that is 15 percent lighter than other composite solutions, decreasing both emissions and fuel consumption for the helicopter. The AW169 horizontal tailplane has a length of nine feet. The thermoplastic material used is Fortron PPS, a high-performance engineering polymer developed by Ticona, a business of Celanese. TenCate Advanced Composites produces the carbon/PPS semipreg and plate material used. With its inherent flame-retardant properties, the material also meets the high safety standards specified by the aircraft industry.