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Getting to grips with automated prepreg handling
Linköping University, Sweden.
RISE - Research Institutes of Sweden, Swerea, Swerea SICOMP.
RISE - Research Institutes of Sweden, Swerea, Swerea SICOMP.
Saab AB, Sweden.
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2017 (English)In: Production Engineering, ISSN 0944-6524, E-ISSN 1863-7353, Vol. 11, no 4-5, p. 445-453Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Automated manufacturing of composite parts based on prepreg material is receiving increased interest with the rising use of composite materials for high-performance applications. The two main automation alternatives for prepreg layup, automated tape layup and fiber placement, are not cost-effective for all types of products, and manual labor is common for the manufacturing of complex parts in low manufacturing volumes. Alternatives to the two dominant automation solutions have been pursued, but so far these have had a limited impact in industrial applications. This paper presents four different solutions for automated layup of prepreg plies to flat laminates that can be formed in a subsequent forming process, which decrease the system complexity. The solutions target products where the layup of flat laminates today is done manually due to technical limitations or cost considerations. The layup solutions must manage challenges caused by material properties such as low material rigidity and tack, and be able to handle a high number of ply shapes. All four solutions are designed for prepreg that is covered with a stiff backing paper. The aim of the paper is to analyze and compare the four solutions. It can be concluded that the most versatile solution is a dual-arm robot equipped with simple end effectors. The dual-arm solution presents a possibility to control the pick-up and lay-down motions that make peeling motions possible, which is advantageous when picking material that has tacked to the pickup surface.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 11, no 4-5, p. 445-453
Keyword [en]
Automation, Composite material, End effector, Layup, Pick and place, Prepreg, Composite materials, Cost effectiveness, End effectors, Manufacture, Paper laminates, Pickups, Automated Manufacturing, Automation solutions, High performance applications, Prepregs, System complexity, Technical limitations
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Natural Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:ri:diva-32430DOI: 10.1007/s11740-017-0763-2Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85027689373OAI: oai:DiVA.org:ri-32430DiVA: diva2:1153803
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VINNOVA
Available from: 2017-10-31 Created: 2017-10-31 Last updated: 2017-10-31Bibliographically approved

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  • apa
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v. 2.30.1