TsAGI, NIK Sign Deal on Development of Soluterm company
29 July 2021
Kirill Sypalo (Director General, TsAGI (a part of NRC “Zhukovsky Institute”); Corresponding Member of the RAS) signed with Aleksandr Korneev (CEO of NIK research-and-engineering company) a partnership agreement on developing Soluterm innovative company, and on acquiring a share in its authorized capital.
The agreement was signed at FUTURE HUB (Academic Science and Aeronautical Technical Creativity of the Youth) central exposition scene at MAKS-2021, the 15th International Aviation and Space Salon. The ceremony was represented by Vadim Medvedev (Director of the Innovation and Advanced Research Department, Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation); Sergey Chernyshev, Chief Scientific Officer (TsAGI), Academician of the RAS; Olga Redkina, First Deputy Mayor of Zhukovsky; and Sergey Bogdan, Russia’s Honored Test Pilot, Hero of Russia.
Soluterm company is TsAGITech resident; simultaneously, it is a member of Skolkovo Foundation. Solirt is a specialized software developed by the company for IR-thermography-based non-destructive thermal control. The software detects and simulates structural defects and barely visible damages caused by inflight and on-ground aircraft operation—for example, impact damage by bird collision, by hail, by tool dropped onto the skin; as well as non-glued places, delamination, hidden water, etc.
Specialists have already started using this software as a basis for testing composite structures of NIK’s small aircraft; the tests revealed that Solirt has a promising future. Furthermore, the technology could be applied in other industries which use composites. Soluterm is already working under a commercial contract with a top foreign car-maker.
‘This is a very important event for us. The idea had been born long ago in TsAGI and reached a high technology readiness level; it was implemented, and today it can be commercialized. Definitely, having such strong partner as NIK, Soluterm will successfully develop its competences and will fully implement its marketability,’ said Kirill Sypalo, Director General (TsAGI), Corresponding Member of the RAS.
‘Gratifyingly, such world-famous institute as TsAGI has considered the possibility to join us for implementing the project in practice. Soluterm is developing technology which is quite interesting and highly advanced,’ said Aleksandr Korneev, CEO of NIK.
‘As aircraft creation is transiting to composite, development by Soluterm company becomes especially urgent and important. Indeed, safety of people is the ultimate task of aircraft manufacturers and airlines—Soluterm offers a unique product to detect problem areas in composite structures timely and quickly, and to reduce greatly the risks of destroying aircraft components,’ said Sergey Chernyshev, Chief Scientific Officer (TsAGI); Academician of the RAS.
‘There are only a few examples when an innovative technology is born from the ground up, and grows into a full-scale highly-marketable technological company. It might be the first precedent when we could commercialize a technology via involving a partner and purchasing a share,’ said Dmitry Chernyshev, Supervisor of Soluterm Project, Head of Innovative Infrastructure and Technologies (TsAGI).
Under this agreement, NIK is planning to implement a number of commercial projects based on Solirt software. In turn, TsAGI will support this development scientifically and technologically.