The AMRC’s brief was to design, develop and manufacture a composite press that could ‘do it all’ as it would be used as a facility to assist a wide range of UK companies to stay at the leading edge of composites development.
The state of the art facility, comprising a 10,000 kN hydraulic press with six axis loading, high pressure RTM, twin die transfer tables, thermal fluid heating system and die splitter, is capable of resin transfer moulding (RTM), prepreg, compression moulding, thermoplastics processes and more. The project attracted funding from the UK government’s Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative (AMSCI).
Rhodes Interform, a specialist in bespoke composite and metal forming machinery, worked closely with AMRC throughout the design and manufacture phase of the project, ensuring that the equipment was delivered on time and to the client’s specifications.
“It was great to support UK industry to build such a unique and capable piece of equipment,” says AMRC Composite Centre Research Engineer, Darren Wells. “This press will allow us to take on a wide and varied range of projects for many years to come.”
The machine will be available for use by companies looking to develop their composites capability through research and development. The facility has already been used as part of a joint venture to develop the future chassis of a UK-based performance automotive company. This project is expected to evolve into full component production, helping to bring hundreds of jobs to the Yorkshire region.
“This project has been a huge success as a result of great communication, teamworking and collaboration between our team and the AMRC,” states Mark Ridgway, CEO of Rhodes Interform. “We are very proud to have manufactured a composite press that will be used by some of the world’s leading manufacturing companies to develop new technologies.”
Industries: Automotive and Road Transportation