Exclusive Look at: Aerospace
The aerospace industry involves various aspects of designing, building, testing, selling and maintaining aircraft, aircraft parts, missiles, rockets or spacecraft. For such a high technology industry, only the most efficient and durable labels and nameplates are suitable for use.
Aerospace labels need to fit complex specifications such as being chemical resistant, weatherproof and flame retardant in order to make them fit for their application, to be able to stand up to such extreme environments on a regular basis. Applications for labels in the aerospace industry include the likes of aircraft instrument panel labels, airport ground support labels, helicopter battery labels and aeroplane safety labels.
In this article, we take a more in-depth look at the products from GSM Graphic Arts that can be used within the aerospace industry.
Aluminium labels are suitable for a range of applications including aerospace component labels, and for the aerospace industry, only the most durable kind of aluminium labels are appropriate.
At GSM Graphic Arts, we offer fully anodised aluminium labels on which the aluminium is pre-anodised to open the pores of the material. The text can then be either silkscreen printed or digitally printed into the pores of the aluminium and the sheets are then sealed to close the pores and lock the ink within the grain. This process makes the label extremely durable and hard wearing, making it perfect for use in the aerospace industry; this type of aluminium has also passed salt mist and UV durability tests performed by external test houses.
GSM Graphic Arts can produce a huge range of bespoke graphic overlays on a range of materials and finishes including polycarbonate and polyester. Graphic overlays are the face of the product, they need to have a high visual impact in addition to being functional and of a high-quality.
For the aerospace industry, it’s important that any graphic overlays are chemical and scratch resistant. They can also be manufactured with laminates, aluminium or stainless steel to help make them even more durable for the extreme conditions they will be exposed to in the likes of the aerospace industry.
We are capable of producing a range of graphic overlays which come with a hard-wearing coating, to add an extra layer of protection when exposed to the harsh elements involved with the aerospace industry.
Warning and safety signs are essential in an environment such as the aerospace industry, for both interior and exterior applications. If inadequate equipment nameplates are used in aerospace applications, serious safety risks can become present in emergency situations. It’s fair to say that you simply cannot afford to compromise when it comes to purchasing equipment nameplates within the aerospace industry.
The process in which we create our equipment nameplates at GSM Graphic Arts, means these products have already been through extensive testing to ensure they are UV stable for a minimum of five years. This is an essential part of the process, to ensure safety signs do not fade in a short period of time after purchase. Our anodising process can be used to seal the surface of the plate to ensure a hard wearing, scuff resistant finish.
Fascia panels are essential within the aerospace industry for providing a clear readout for the instruments. Displays can be illuminated or non-illuminated and can be crafted to the exact specifications of aerospace panels.
At GSM Graphic Arts, we supply fascia panels using a variety of materials and manufacturing methods, including under-surface printed plastic panels, fully anodised aluminium panels, etched and filled stainless steel panels. Our digital printing system allows us to re-create full photographic imagery, which is useful for smaller prototype or pre-production runs. The panels are incredibly robust and offer easy to read markings with a clear layout, all whilst being fully functional, all of which are absolutely vital in the aerospace industry.
Etched nameplates offer an even more durable option than surface printing or even anodised text. These nameplates are chemically etched to offer a permanent marking solution. They are recommended for applications where the environment is particularly harsh, such as the aerospace industry.
The etched details on these nameplates is achieved by silkscreen printing a chemical resistant coating into the areas which are not to be etched. The sheets are then put through the etching machine which contains a mixture of ferric chloride and hydrochloric acid with water, and the areas not covered by the mixture are etched away. The sheet is rinsed and cleaned off and the etched nameplate can then be left, or paint infilled with a stove enamel paint and baked at a high temperature.
For more information about any of the products, processes or market sectors that GSM Graphic Arts serve, please feel free to call us on +44 (0) 1845 522184 or send us an enquiry and we would be more than happy to answer any of your questions.