Sigma Launches ‘Lite’ brand at Paris Airshow

15 Jun 2015 Published by






Leading aerospace manufacturer Sigma Components, which forms Avingtrans plc’s aerospace division, is launching a new range of lightweight aero-engine and airframe components, under the ‘Sigma Lite’ brand at Paris Airshow (Hall 2B, Stand G158).


Components in the range include composite pipes, lightweight end fittings and drive shafts, offering substantial weight savings compared to conventionally-manufactured counterparts.


Mark Johnson, founder and managing director of Sigma Components, said: “The need for lightweight, greener, more fuel-efficient aircraft continues to present a real challenge to the industry, shifting the focus of aerospace manufacturers towards composite components.


“We have invested heavily in research and development over recent years to meet this challenge head on and we’re excited by the results of that investment.”


Star of the Sigma Lite range is COMPipe – a composite aero-engine pipe that delivers weight savings of 50% over traditionally-manufactured pipes. The result of a CleanSky funded programme, COMPipe is capable of withstanding operating temperatures up to 165°C, operating pressures of up to 450 psi and a typical engine operating environment, including fireproof requirements.


The range also includes lightweight end fittings – a variation of Sigma’s successful self-locking nuts, concept designs for metallic end-fittings produced using additive manufacturing techniques, and composite drive shafts.


Mark continued: “While each new component is an exciting development in its own right, the real step change comes when you look at how modest weight savings in a single fitting can create a massive snowball effect, greatly reducing the overall cost, size and environmental impact of manufacturing and running an aircraft.


“For example, there are approximately 150 suitable applications for COMPipe on an aero-engine. Our figures suggest that using composite rather than metallic pipes could offer total weight savings of approximately 10kg per engine. The knock-on effect for the rest of the aircraft is likely to magnify that, delivering empty weight savings of 50kg for a twin-jet aircraft.


“If that kind of difference can be generated by just one component, it’s not difficult to imagine the potential savings on offer if more composite and lightweight components were to be used.


“With representatives of the global aerospace industry attending the Paris Airshow over the next few days, we’re excited to be able to share these new developments with the industry and showcase the work our team has been involved with turning concept into reality.”
The Sigma Lite range includes new products and works in progress from Sigma’s ongoing R&D programmes. These programmes have been supported by investments from the National Aerospace Technology Exploitation Programme (NATEP), the UK Government’s Sharing in Growth programme, the EU-funded CleanSky programme and the Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative (AMSCI).