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    Replacing Built-in Cables with Flexible Printed Circuits

    With rapid developments taking place in aircraft design in the move towards more sustainable flight, saving weight and space has become more crucial than ever. At the world’s leading international conference dedicated to ultra-low-emission aircraft technology and full-electric flight possibilities, Trackwise CEO Philip Johnston will be presenting “Saving weight, space, assembly time and cost by replacing built-in cables with flexible Printed circuits ” on June 1 at the Electric & Hybrid Aerospace Technology Symposium in Frankfurt. 

    Flexible printed circuits (FPCs) have been used in aircraft applications since the mid-twentieth century but their use has been limited until now as they could only be manufactured in 610mm/24inch lengths.  Now, this has changed: UK manufacturer Trackwise has developed a patented FPC manufacturing process, Integrated Harness Technology (IHT), which enables the production of FPCs of almost unlimited length – last July the company announced it had manufactured and delivered a record-breaking multi-layer 72 metre-long FPC.

    Trackwise IHT FPCs are flexible and lightweight, offering multiple benefits and applications in the aerospace harness technology industry.   Used to replace traditional wire harnesses, multi-layer IHT FPCs not only save space and weight but can also carry distributed sensors and other electronics, becoming a smart harness rather than just a passive interconnect. In addition, the IHT manufacturing process is roll-to-roll, machine-intensive and cost-effective, offering improved precision, repeatability and reliability.

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