S2 wheel changeS2 Aerospace originally applied for funding to address a specific need identified by one of its high profile military customers i.e. to design, develop and test a prototype novel Storage Management and Rapid Transit (SMART) Racking System for aircraft wheels.

Wheels are currently stored in a manner that negatively impacts tyre and bearing longevity.  The planned SMART racking system will store wheels in a controlled way that minimises contamination and fatigue.  A specially adapted transport trailer facilitates easy transit of wheels to aircraft from the storage area.  Novel bearing protection will be incorporated to prevent water and dust ingress during transport and storage
To take the project forward, S2 Aerospace is working in collaboration with The University of the West of England to develop an in-house capability for innovative engineering design of new technologies and products to add to its already extensive mechanical engineering operation.

This denotes a real step-change from its more traditional role as a build to print enterprise and furthermore will enhance the UK aerospace supply chain.S2 6 wheel config

The results to date are impressive.  The initial project outline has been re-designed and expanded with support from the West of England Aerospace Forum (WEAF). A new trolley design for transporting individual wheels from the bespoke storage racks to the Rapid Transit trailer and thus to the aircraft is being designed – streamlining the process still further. Further enhancements will include the integration of active elements creating a 3 level product range including mechanical and powered options.  The range will reduce all pressure point fatigue leading to potentially longer mean time between repairs.
The storage, transportation and protection range will be extremely adaptable and have the potential to suit any make or size of wheel making this an attractive offering to end-users within both civil and military aerospace, and beyond.
Although only at the pre-prototype phase – the concept of the SMART Racking system has already generated interest in the UK, China and Qatar which ultimately could lead to new manufacturing jobs at the South West of England based firm.

S2 Aerospace Company Director Tim Shortman states:

NATEP has provided the platform for S2 Aerospace to add product design and development to our portfolio, adding real benefit to our capabilities and expanding our business opportunities”.

S2 aerospace UWE WEAF only rgb


For further information on this project please contact Pauline Kelly - NATEP Coordinator for the South West of England

pauline@weaf.co.uk

Tel: 01275 872 353