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C-5 Engine Pylon Alignment System
This system is used to assist technicians at Lockheed Martin in placing the new stonger, pylons on the lower surface of the C-5 wing. The complete system consists of four similar - but not identical machines. Each machine uses six servos to generate motion in 6-degrees of freedom to align the pylon mounting lugs. Four machine vision cameras on each fixture make the measurements which are analyzed by a computer to control motion. From a precision alignment perspective, this system is almost identical to the F-22 Fuselage Mate System, and it is very similar to the F-22 Center-Fuselage Mate System, except this machine uses cameras rather than lasers for the alignment measurements.
One of the challenges of this system is that the lugs have to be mounted using old fastener holes, but the lugs are not identical to the original lugs. Also, all this work is done with the wing on a C-5 (not with the wing in a fixture), so no references are available from tooling. The system has to be attached to and removed from the wing several times during the process, but must accurately repeat its position each time it is reattached.