Specializing in aircraft engine nacelle (housing) design and manufacture, Aircelle have just had a bright idea, to illuminate liveries and logos on the various parts of airplanes by using an applied auto-adhesive electro-luminescent system. A new way for airlines to be more visible on airport tarmacs at night, for example. Only one month ago, a full-size test was carried out on an A380.
This innovative display solution required three years’ research by the Aircelle teams. Between the first prototype in the colours of Virgin, then those of Airbus, the thickness of the auto-adhesive film has been divided by ten (now measuring no more than 370 microns, or 0.015 in.), therefore having no negative aerodynamic influence.
As for the recipe: take one dose of phosphorus, add a pinch of coloured pigments, and connect everything to an electrical power supply (28 volts).
Serge Rière, Production Manager at Aircelle, Colomiers: interview in the video.
The application of the system to the engine housing, its underlying wiring installation and final protective film drying, takes between 24 and 48 hours.
The marketing of this electro-luminescent signage is scheduled for December. The technology has been patented and interests aircraft manufacturers, such as Pilatus, and many airlines wishing to have exclusivity. For now Aircelle is not yet there. Thanks to its success, the company must now set up all the logistics behind this new offering, and determine prices, which, for the time being, are confidential.