Novel form-flexible handling and joining tool for automated preforming

Novel form-flexible handling and joining tool for automated preforming

Categories Zeitschriften/Aufsätze
Year 2015
Authors Kunz, H.; Löchte, C.; Dietrich, F.; Raatz, A.; Fischer, F.; Dröder, K.; Dilger, K.
Published in Science and Engineering of Composite Materials, deGruyter, 2015, Vol. 22(2), pp. 199-213

The production rates of carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) parts are rising constantly which in turn drives research to bring a higher level of automation to the manufacturing processes of CFRP. Resin transfer molding (RTM), which is seen as a production method for high volumes, has been accelerated to a high degree. However, complex net-shape preforms are necessary for this process, which are widely manually manufactured. To face these challenges a new concept for the manufacturing of carbon fiber preforms with a form-flexible gripping, draping and joining end-effector is presented and discussed. Furthermore, this paper investigates the application of this concept, describes the initial build-up of a demonstrator, focusing on material selection and heating technology, and discusses test results with the prototype. This prototype already validates the feasibility of the proposed concept on the basis of a generic preform geometry. After a summary, this paper discusses future in-depth research concerning the concept and its application in more complex geometries.

ISSN 2191-0359
DOI 10.1515/secm-2013-0326