Aerotrope’s team attended the Advanced Engineering Show in Birmingham as part of the Sailrocket 2 showcase. Our stand was well attended and we answered the many questions about design details of the fastest sailboat in the world. It was great to be so busy, though it left barely enough time to take in the rest of what was a very interesting show, featuring all in one place the industry’s latest commercially available materials, hardware and software.
Highlights for the Aerotrope team included meeting up with Chris Burkett from Flow Solutions, whose software was invaluable during the wingsail design of Sailrocket 2. We also said Hi to Dan Eamuss from Independent Composites, who built the base-ventilated hydrofoil that contributed to our boat reaching the outright world record speed of 65.45 knots.
On walking across the show we had interesting conversations with The Niche Vehicle Network (we are members) and we saw a number of great niche vehicles on display.
An must-see stop followed at Renishaw AM’s stand, on display was the world’s first 3D printed titanium bicycle frame, manufactured for Empire Cycles. We have some real bike nuts amongst our team who were amazed by the result, given that it has only been possible to print in Titanium quite recently. What a desirable object.
Laser Lines was another company our engineers wanted to look up. Their machines showcased just how much is possible these days, in terms of using laser cutting and 3D printing possibilities, e.g. for making moulds for composite structures.
The team also spoke to Theta Technologies, who impressed our composites fracture specialist Dr Victoria Bloodworth with their unconventional non-destructive testing methodology: It measures the acoustic vibrational response of materials, detecting cracks with a combination of SEM and Theta Technology’s in-house pulse inversion NDT system. The results promise to be more accurate than X-rays.
We will definitely come back to the Advanced Engineering Show in 2016- see you there! For more photos of our visit please go to our Facebook page.