A 3D tape placement applicator for tape winding and tape placement for the University of Limerick

Conbility´s tape placement head installed at the Bernal Institute of the University of Limerick, Ireland.

Unique selling point of the “PrePro 3D” system is its multifunctional range of usage: it accomplishes laser-assisted thermoplastic tape placement, IR-assisted thermoset prepreg placement including the unwinding of backing paper and dry fiber placement: Three technologies included in one single modular system. The system installed in Limerick is equipped with an infrared heating source but can be easily upgraded with a high-power diode laser system.

The multifunctional “PrePro3D” head installed at the existing robot system of the University of Limerick

The “PrePro 3D” tape placement and winding applicator is available as modular tool with decentral control system and HMI (including closed-loop control of energy input into the processing zone) for the “plug-in” implementation in existing robot systems or machine systems by standard interfaces for the communication with the master control system. Conbility provides the single applicator as well as turn-key ready systems including the robot and handling systems as well as the laser-safe manufacturing cell.

The “PrePro 3D” head is based on 25 years of development work at the Fraunhofer Institute for Production Technology (IPT) regarding laser-assisted tape processing with in-situ consolidation. Since 2018, Conbility GmbH is contract partner of the Fraunhofer Institute for Production Technology, IPT for the commercialization and further development of the tape placement system “PrePro 2D” and “PrePro 3D”.

3-spool production machine for laser-assisted in-situ consolidation of thermoplastic composite blanks Copyright: Conbility GmbH.

Dr. Ronan O’Higgins, Bernal Institute, University of Limerick:

‘We are delighted to have the Conbility “PrePro 3D” system commissioned at the Bernal Institute’s Composite Laboratory. This will significantly enhance our capability to conduct research on processing of novel composite structures, allowing us to realize and validate the novel designs developed by our research team for a variety of high-performance applications. We already have a number of projects underway which will use this equipment, in conjunction with the SFI Confirm Smart Manufacturing Research Centre and look forward to the future research opportunities it will enable’

The University of Limerick would like to acknowledge that funding for this equipment was provided by Science Foundation Ireland (SFI) for funding Spatially and Temporally VARIable COMPosite Structures (VARICOMP). PI Prof. Paul Weaver, Grant No. (15/RP/2773) under its Research Professor programme

The multifunctional “PrePro3D” head installed at the existing robot system of the University of Limerick

Companies: Conbility

Technologies: Fiber Placement

Terms: News Worldwide

This article has been edited by Basalt.Today
This article has been written on JEC Composites Magazine
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