Commercial air travel is expected to make a slow recovery according to a recent Deloitte Aerospace and Defense Industry Outlook report which stated passenger traffic dropped 73 percent in 2020 while capacity levels declined 63 percent. In fact, despite an effective COVID-19 vaccine, passenger traffic isn’t expected to rebound before 2024. As a result, commercial aircraft order backlogs are down as well as rotorcrafts. New orders will likely lag, but according to Deloitte, the changing climate could boost higher demand for narrow-body aircraft.
Like most companies, we are creating new ways of doing business this year while we continue to strengthen customer support. Deloitte, in its 2021 Manufacturing Industry Outlook report went so far as to say that, “2020 has been a year like no other in recent history …and that recovery may take longer to reach pre-pandemic levels. The audit and financial advisor used the Oxford Economic Model (OEM) to project annual manufacturing GDP growth levels for 2021 at -5.4 percent. The latest U.S. Industrial Production Index numbers were recorded at 101.5 in September 2019, a drop from a pre-pandemic level of 110.
Some experts believe we are years from realizing self-driving cars. But if you take a look under the hood and kick the tires, the timeline for the autonomous car might be closer than we think. The world’s top automakers have made some interesting predictions and companies like Ford, GM, BMW and others have established their own timelines
If you're a regular reader, you know we've recently explored the automobile, airplane and medical device markets and the way these manufacturers use CMMs. We've summarized some of those key points as well as some additional information into a new ebook, which we'd like to introduce with this blog. Let's start with the airline industry!
Photo courtesy of OSX, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=12890947
In the 1982 blockbuster E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Elliott utters the memorable line, “One thing. I have absolute power. Say it,” just before he introduces E.T. to his brother Michael. Car makers are also asking for accurate absolute measurements, especially when it comes to Body in White (BIW) assembly.
According to Wikipedia, "Body in white or BIW refers to the stage in automobile manufacturing in which a car body's sheet metal components have been welded together. BIW is termed before painting & before moving parts (doors, hoods, and deck lids as well as fenders), the engine, chassis sub-assemblies or trim (glass, seats, upholstery, electronics, etc.) have been assembled in the frame structure." As you can see, BIW involves many parts, and metrology plays a key role.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that Americans spent 39,243,750 hours in 2014 on yard work alone. Do you ever look at your own house or lawn and feel like your to-do list is endless? In the automotive and transportation industries, metrology needs also appear endless. Every part you can think of needs to be inspected at one point or another somewhere along the supply chain.
Auto makers are feeling the pressure of tightening margins and shorter turnaround times. Innovation continues to rapidly change the way parts are made. Also, automotive quality standards recently received a significant update, giving sector members one more thing to keep pace with. The challenge? Balancing innovation with safety.