Data Collection and Analysis for the Creation of a Digital Shadow During the Production of Thermoplastic Composite Layers in Unbonded Flexible Pipes
Unbonded flexible pipes present a mature technology for the efficient recovery and transport of hydrocarbons offshore. The substitution of metallic reinforcement layers in the multilayered structure by thermoplastic fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) presents a solution for self-weight issues of especially long pipes, as FRP materials display high specific strength and modulus while being resistant to external pressure and corrosion. The production of these layers is automated by the laser assisted tape winding process without the need of additional curing steps. During the manufacturing process, several data like process temperature and consolidation pressure are continuously monitored by non-contact sensors to ensure process stability without interfering in the consolidation process. To gain additional information about the temperature distribution within the multi-layered laminate, contact temperature sensors were introduced in the tape winding process. By this method the temperature of subjacent tapes can be assessed during the continued winding process. Additionally, this paper features a new approach of utilizing winding path data for relating the time-dependent sensor data to the exact position on the produced part. The visualization of path-dependent sensor data opens up possibilities of linking quality monitoring results to manufacturing insufficiencies and potential part defects.