Aircraft Inspection Tech Advances Toward Market Entry
A startup working to develop a mixed reality (MR) system to streamline aircraft inspections is accelerating its planned market entry thanks to a new round of venture capital funding.
Budapest-based AerinX has received €2 million ($2.3 million) in Pre-Series A round funding from Takarek Venture Capital Fund, managed by Dutch-Hungarian company DBH Investment. According to AerinX CEO Antal Bence Kiss, the startup will use this latest investment to accelerate its technological research and business development activities before a planned market entry in early 2021. In the next 6-9 months, AerinX plans to finetune and extend the functionality of its system.
AerinX’s MR inspection system, which has been in development since 2015, uses smart glasses to project relevant technical information about an aircraft type in 3D on the surface of an aircraft to help technicians determine the size and exact location of damage. This data is automatically registered to AerinX’s database so inspection results can be investigated remotely. According to AerinX, the system can reduce inspection time from up to two hours to around 20 minutes.
The system has been in testing for heavy and line maintenance processes since the beginning of 2020 at Aeroplex of Central Europe, one of the region’s largest MROs. According to AerinX, other major international MROs will begin using the system soon for a planned 2-4 month test period within the framework of its Early Adopter Program.
Since the platform began testing at Aeroplex of Central Europe, AerinX has added a number of features including support for Boeing aircraft models, voice command support and advanced administrative and reporting functions. It has also transferred the system to the newly released Microsoft HoloLens 2 device.
According to a representative for AerinX, there has been a growing interest in the remote collaboration and data sharing functions the platform supports in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Takarek Venture Capital Fund sees huge potential in the smart aircraft inspection system developed by AerinX, which absolutely fits into the major digitalization processes currently affecting the aircraft industry worldwide,” says Marcell Horvath, CEO of DBH Investment. “In our opinion, the company will be able to gain significant market share in the aircraft maintenance industry, achieving a dominant position among technologies emerging.”