Composite beam structures used in machine, automation or materials handling systems, offer significant physical and mechanical advantages over their steel or aluminium counterparts. Composite structures are lighter, stiffer and can be constructed to offer superior levels of damping, enabling machine systems to be operated at far higher speeds and with much greater accuracy and repeatability.
Until now, the use of composite materials outside of the main light weighting applications, such as aerospace and automotive has generally been limited to specialised machine and automation systems. This is partly due to their cost, as composites can be more expensive than steel or aluminium. More frequently however it’s because design and manufacturing engineers have yet to grasp the real advantages that composite materials bring when designing or constructing a much wider range of machine systems.
To learn more a white paper, which is available via free download from the CompoTech website, explains the highly automated manufacturing process of axial fibre placement – which can produce beams and tubes that are 10 to 15% stiffer in the direction of the fibre while offering 50% greater strength in bending. The white paper also covers: the advantages of composites, how these differ from other materials; areas of application for improving speed of manufacture, productivity and quality; and, the cost benefits associated with carbon fibre and the significant savings.
Composite components can be engineered to deliver twice the stiffness of steel at a quarter of its mass, while providing vibration damping properties up to twenty times better than steel and, importantly, thermal stability in conditions of widely varying machine temperatures.
According to Professor Milan Ruzicka, Head of the Department Mechanics, Czech Technical University, Prague, “This is where the technical benefits of composites lie. Companies embracing such solutions make them innovators and enhance their reputations as leaders in their field.”
Download the free white paper from the CompoTech website. www.compotech.com