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Form-adaptive gripping system for light-weight productions

: Brecher, Christian; Kukla, Christian; Schares, Richard; Emonts, Michael

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20th International Conference on Composite Materials, ICCM 2015. Proceedings. Online resource : 19-24 July 2015, Copenhagen, Denmark
Copenhagen, 2015
Paper P101-15, 9 pp.
International Conference on Composite Materials (ICCM) <20, 2015, Copenhagen>
Conference Paper, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer IPT ()

Today’s systems for the production of fibre-reinforced plastics (FRP) realise cycle times under 3 minutes for injection and curing thanks to new materials (e.g. fast curing epoxy resins, high reactive polyurethane) and innovative process technologies (e.g. high-pressure-RTM, gap impregnation).
Such cycle times cannot be found in all steps of the thermoset RTM-process-chain. During the manufacturing of semi-finished non-impregnated textile preforms, reproducible processes for the separation, manipulation and draping of technical textiles are necessary. Especially small scale productions for load-optimized FRP-components require form-flexible and area-adaptive handling systems to handle individual blanks from CNC cutters.
The main requirements and challenges of an automated handling and draping system for technical textiles are full-areal gripping and the application of defined force patterns to ensure the handling of air-permeable and sensitive textiles without impairing the fibre-structure. Those requirements are met by the principle of electrostatic gripping whose applicability in the production of FRP-light-weight-components is being continuously developed at the Fraunhofer Institute for Production Technology IPT since 2007.
One of the main benefits of this handling-technology is the application-specific adaptation of the gripping-electrodes. Fraunhofer IPT is one of the worldwide leading developers of grippers with variable sizes and shapes and a flexible surface. Thus Fraunhofer IPT enables the electrostatic gripping systems for the handling in complex 3D-gripping and -draping scenarios for the composite-industry.