Paper number 748
|A PROTOTYPE RESEARCH LABORATORY FOR AUTOMATED FABRICATION OF HIGH PERFORMANCE COMPOSITES|
N. J. Johnston1, H. L. Belvin1, R. J. Cano1, J. M Marchello2, and A. B. Hulcher2
1NASA Langley Research Center, Hampton, VA 23681 USA
2Old Dominion University, Norfolk, VA 23529 USA
|Summary||A new NASA facility has been built which has proved to be a valuable asset for obtaining data, experience, and insights for developing new and improved high performance composite processing technology. The facility consists of an ABB robot armed with a modified heated head capable of hot gas and focused infrared heating. Techniques were developed for fabricating the dry material forms required to successfully place high quality thermoplastic and thermoset composite materials. A variety of composites have been fabricated by heated head tow and tape placement and key properties obtained which demonstrate values close to those obtained by hand lay-up/autoclave processing. Future work is directed toward developing processes to fabricate net shape composites by non-autoclave ply-by-ply, cure-on-the-fly techniques.
||Keywords|| fiber placement, in-situ cure, robot, thermoplastics, polyimides, cure-on-the-fly, non-autoclave processes, automation.
Theme : Processing, Integrated Design and Manufacturing ; Processing
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