In collaboration with MBDA and the Compositadour team recently demonstrated the process for manufacturing rectangular tubes with the AFP-XS. The layup program was generated using the winding feature of AddPath, and as shown in the video below, the AFP-XS performs the layup on the sharp radial corners ensuring wrinkle/pucker-free layup through sharp steering, while monitoring the process.
Rectangular tubes are one of the most basic building blocks for many modular systems in the industry. The following section highlights the key benefits of building rectangular tubes with the AFP process.
Why rectangular tubes
Tubes are commonly used as structural elements in buildings, bridges, and other engineering applications, and in a wide variety of end-use consumer products. Rectangular tubing has many benefits: aesthetic appeal, high strength-to-weight ratios, uniform strength, cost-effectiveness, and more.
Rectangular tubing has greater strength-to-weight ratios than other forms of beams. So, with rectangular tubing you need less material by weight to achieve the same characteristics, thereby reducing the cost of manufacture
Excellent load-bearing properties - in both torsional and compression directions - enables rectangular tubes to be suited to many different applications
Superior environmental resistance makes rectangular tubes particularly well suited for a wide range of outdoor applications
Rectangular tubes via AFP
The AFP process enables reduced wall thickness and weight while improving stiffness and strength compared to conventional winding and Pultrusion processes. Each part produced can be carefully optimized according to application and requirements by:
Optimized fiber orientation
Diameters from 20 mm to 1000 mm
Lightweight and stiff structure
Electrically insulating and chemically resistant
Low thermal expansion design: dimensionally stable
Constrained telescopic structures
Addcomposites is the provider of the Automated Fiber Placement (AFP) system. The AFP system can be rented on a monthly basis to work with thermosets, thermoplastic, dry fiber placement, or in combination with 3d printers.
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