British company Surface Generation has developed a new Multiplexing compression moulding technology, making it possible to form fibre-reinforced plastic components in high-volume manufacturing environments with greater speed and precision.
Parts taking more than six minutes using traditional compression moulding techniques can now be produced in two minutes using the company’s Multiplexing technology, informs
It uses a unique transfer process with a pressure containment cassette that allows mould faces and laminates to be held at predefined loads, even outside the press.
Mould faces are loaded into the cassettes and passed through a series of material loading, preheating, moulding, cooling and de-moulding stations, which precisely control the temperature and pressure applied. The use of multiple cassettes, preheating and cooling stations minimises time within the press and makes it possible to achieve Takt times of as low as one minute.
Traditional transfer processes use laminate preheating, with cold tools to speed production. With PtFS and Multiplexing the mould heats, stabilises and cools parts, allowing the press to open early and freeing this expensive bottleneck to run again Ben Halford, Chief Executive at Surface Generation
Oakham-based Surface Generation, a provider of carbon fibre processing technologies, is working with the University of Warwick’s Manufacturing Group (WMG) and AGC AeroComposites (AGC) to develop new composite press-forming processes for automotive and aerospace manufacturers.