Limitations of processing carbon fibre reinforced plastic/polymer material using automated fibre placement technology

R. P. Smith, Z. Qureshi, R. J. Scaife, H. M. El-Dessouky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Citations (Scopus)


Automated fibre placement was used to optimise the tow steering of carbon fibre reinforced plastic/polymer whereby the minimum defect-free steering radius (Rmin) achievable. The results revealed that in the case of the woven ply surface with unheated tool the Rmin, using 1/4 inch tows, is found to be 1350 mm. For the bare tool surface, the tool temperature had to be raised to 30 in order to achieve the same Rmin of 1350 mm. To attain a seamless transition from part design to manufacture using CAD, automated fibre placement was equipped with software tools (TruPLAN and TruFIBER). From the results of software validation and steering trials on a variable radius tool having a pre-laid UD ply, it is found that the ability to steer around a tighter radius was a vast asset of the 1/8 inch tow over the 1/4 inch one, which makes it the preferred choice for the more geometrically complex parts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1527-1542
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Reinforced Plastics and Composites
Issue number21
Early online date11 Jul 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2016
Externally publishedYes


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