Industrial Remote Control for Aircraft Manufacturing


The world relies on air travel. From commercial jetliners to military aircraft and even aerospace, the importance of using the latest technology advancements is paramount to ensuring the safety of manufacturing processes and the client’s end-user passengers. Cattron remote control solutions are crucial to today’s most advanced processes.


Modernizing custom production processes that meet high standards of quality and reliability is very important. Each piece of aeronautics is built to exact precision, ensuring the safety of the passengers it will carry through its useful life. The production process of these machines also needs to be precise while keeping pace with the modernization of technology. Legacy equipment that is not upgradable or future-proofed doesn’t provide the compatibility with advancing processes that one industry leader requires. Flexible solutions need flexible ideas – Cattron flies above the rest in both.


To update its facility, a leading manufacturer searched for automation solutions that would allow feedback from its PLC drives to its remote control units. Based on an existing relationship, Cattron was chosen for its ability to provide the technology needed in the timeframe required with the industry-leading support competence for such a critical implementation.

Cattron’s technical capabilities allowed the manufacturer to implement an Ethernet IP interface with an RF management process that allows up to six operators to share one frequency using Time Division Multiple Access (TOMA) technology. In addition, Cattron’s system allows sub-addressing so operators at the facility can safely control any of the plant’s 100 Machine Control Units (MCU) by inserting RFID keys into the Operator Control Unit (OCU). The implementation is ongoing at the production facility that houses 150 carriers, each with its own MCU, 50 bridges with its own MCU, and 50 OCUs that can safely select any of the MCUs in the plant. Although the plant is clean and organized, using these units demands precision and reliability with no operational lags or drop-outs.

Production at the facility was uninterrupted due to the ability of Cattron to design a system to replace the obsolete units while simultaneously providing the added operator feedback and Ethernet IP interface. The manufacturer could continue operating their carriers throughout their facility seamlessly with modern equipment, adding the ability to provide information back to the operators through Cattron’s LCD screen. Most importantly, Cattron provided a much more secure method of selecting the carriers using RFID keys. Future work on these installed systems includes adding security features and predictive analytics system software.

In this instance, the technology is available to other applications, providing a two-way information flow between the controlled machine and the radio. This Cattron capability allows for data collection and dissemination where and when needed. Controller alerts, position data, faults, and other real-time information improve operations and production management.