Saint-Gobain Abrasives Provides Solutions for High Flying Aerospace Industry

WATERVLIET, NY (April 3, 2014) – According to leading industry analysts, driven by increased commercial production, the global aerospace industry is poised to grow by as much as 5 percent in 2014, despite a marked drop in defense spending[1]. To help meet this increased demand while maintaining operational efficiency, Saint-Gobain Abrasives, the world’s leading manufacturer and supplier of performance-engineered abrasives, will feature its Norton brand of high-performance abrasives solutions for aerospace maintenance and repair applications at Aviation Week MRO Americas at the Phoenix Convention Center in Arizona (April 8-10, 2014, Booth 2940).

Norton brand products, along with other Saint-Gobain division products, offer better efficiencies and technology for all types of fabrication across the Aerospace market. In 2013 alone, Norton brand products combined for more than $10 million in cost savings for the Aerospace industry.

For aerospace applications such as exterior and interior airframe maintenance and repair, stripping and painting, and engine rebuild and maintenance, Saint-Gobain will feature its portfolio of quick change disc products, including Norton Rapid Prep™, Norton Vortex Rapid Prep™, Norton Vortex Rapid Blend™, Norton Blaze Rapid Blend™ and Norton Blaze Rapid Strip™. Also featured will be belt products, Norton Rapid Prep™ LF (low flex) aluminum oxide (A/O), and being introduced at the show, Norton Rapid Prep™ RF (regular flex) A/O. These products include Saint-Gobain Abrasives’ Clean Bond™ resin technology for a smear-free finish.

Additional products on display include Quantum™ X grinding wheels with Vitrium³™ bonded abrasives technology, and Norton Multi-Air® Cyclonic™ vacuum discs for aerospace applications.

“As the civil aviation market continues to show steady growth, aerospace manufacturers and suppliers find themselves under increased pressure to raise productivity while controlling costs,” according to Jim Krause, Manager, Segment Marketing – Aerospace, Saint-Gobain Abrasives. “Our comprehensive portfolio of Norton Bear-Tex abrasives solutions provides aerospace operations with the performance they need to maintain effective and efficient operations.”

High-Performance Quick Change Discs

Norton Rapid Prep non-woven products combine a high-performance A/O abrasive grain with Clean Bond resin technology, allowing for faster throughput and reduced labor requirements. Norton Vortex Rapid Prep products combine the same Clean Bond smear-free performance, but with a patented Vortex abrasive that provides up to four times the performance of conventional surface conditioning products. Both products are suited for aircraft frame component work like blending mismatch and corner break on aluminum spars, as well as aircraft OEM interior finishing.

For more challenging applications, Norton Vortex Rapid Blend, Norton Blaze Rapid Blend, and Norton Blaze Rapid Strip offer a combination of synthetic mesh and patented abrasives (different abrasive grains) for removing imperfections on metal surfaces, working up to eight times better than conventional discs on aircraft repair including epoxy adhesive removal from carbon fiber inner skin, carbon fiber and copper removal, and aircraft airframe blending mismatch and corner break on aluminum spars. Norton Blaze Rapid Strip is an excellent choice for airframe component work, such as blending and finishing stainless steel and titanium straps.

Specialized Belt Products

Norton Rapid Prep LF A/O combines an A/O abrasive grain that is sharp yet extremely durable, bonded to a high-tensile nylon scrim backing using Clean Bond resin technology for a smear-free finish.  Norton Rapid Prep LF A/O was designed for use in wide belt forms where operating conditions require a stiffer belt with high durability.

Norton Rapid Prep RF A/O features an innovative design that combines premium A/O abrasive grain with a Y-wt. polyester backing resulting in a belt product with extreme durability and flexibility with low stretch. Clean Bond resin technology has also been incorporated for a smear-free finish, eliminating process steps and reducing labor requirements. Norton Rapid Prep RF A/O was designed for use in belt forms where high-tensile machines and/or operating conditions require a belt with low stretch properties. 

Ideal for aerospace manufacturing applications such as jet engine blade grinding and finishing, as well as maintenance and repair applications, including blending and deburring, both belt products are available in Coarse, Medium, Fine and Very Fine grit sizes and in all popular portable and off-hand belt sizes, including special sizes up to 52 inches wide.

Grinding Wheels

Quantum X Creepfeed Wheels feature patented pore-induced construction, ceramic abrasive and a powerful Vitrium³ bond to provide high metal removal rates, ideal for challenging applications from low- to medium- and high-force on heat-sensitive, difficult to grind Inconel, titanium, and other aerospace alloys. Aerospace applications include turbine blade, panel and hex shoulder grinding.

Norton Vitrium3 patent-pending bonded abrasives technology provides maximum grain adhesion for enhanced performance. A stronger bond improves cut rate with less burn and power consumption, while increased porosity helps eliminate burn or part damage on difficult-to-grind materials such as nickel alloys, tool steels and chrome.

Multi-hole Vacuum Discs

Norton Multi-Air Cyclonic Discs feature precision laser-cut spiral design for a more consistent cut rate and maximum dust extraction.  Ceramic alumina grain allows for superior cut, and a fiber-reinforced latex/paper backing provides flexibility and durability, while a No-Fil water-based stearate coating extends disc life. Norton Multi-Air Cyclonic vacuum discs are ideal for aerospace applications including fuselage paint removal.

About Norton

Norton is a brand of Saint-Gobain. Founded in 1885, Norton manufactured the first precision-made and mass-produced grinding wheel, and was one of first producers of commercial coated abrasives. Today, Norton-brand products are used widely across a variety of industries, including manufacturing, construction, aerospace, electronics and automotive, among others. The company’s patented abrasive grains, proprietary resins and non-woven materials offer improved productivity and faster throughput, reducing labor requirements, and helping customers complete projects more quickly. In 1990, Norton was acquired by Saint-Gobain, the world leader in the manufacture of engineered materials, headquartered in France. To learn more about Saint-Gobain Abrasives’ Norton brand capabilities and offerings, please visit: http://www.nortonbeartex.com

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