ADDCOMPOSITES (Espoo, FI), specializes in the design and development of compact and modular fiber placement end-effectors for robotic manipulators, is pleased to announce a partnership with Effman (Sherbrooke, QC), an engineering firm specializing in the development of solutions for the automation of composites manufacturing.
This collaborative approach aims to integrate the AFP-XS, a lightweight fiber placement unit, into a fully robotic standard cell in order to bring a process for shaping composites to SMEs at an affordable price.
In the current market, the processes of forming composite materials with either an open mold or by infusion require human intervention at various stages, including the placement of reinforcements. To date, it is mainly the aerospace, aeronautics, and automotive fields that have had to develop automated processes for the placement of high performance fiber to meet the quality and optimization requirements.
However, there is currently very little development of affordable technologies for small and medium-sized enterprises operating in markets with more moderate quality and speed requirements. These companies still perform repetitive tasks manually, with a need to optimize productivity and improve safety. The Effman / Addcomposites collaboration aims precisely to address these needs through automation.
As part of its work, Effman can count on the collaboration of the National Research Council of Canada (CNRC). In addition to the automation work, a dry fiber tape development project is underway in collaboration with Groupe CTT in Canada and Addcomposites.
The test unit implementation is slated for fall in North America.
Alain Gagne & James Kuligoski
EFFMAN & ADDCOMPOSITES