SAMBA in rolling motion

One of the core features of the Fiber Patch Placement (FPP) technology is the usage of a form-flexible gripper to apply patches of different materials on an almost arbitrarily shaped surface. The gripper can apply patches of up to DIN A4 size as of today to highly curved large surfaces, e.g. of aerostructures. But in certain convex areas the process is limited by the height of the gripper body as shown in figure a). The depicted behavior is usually observed, when the size of the gripper is too large in relation to some limiting surface features of the part. The gripper can’t apply the full patch, because its base plate would touch the surface before the edges of the patch could come into contact. Up to now SAMBA production cells have been equipped with an in-process gripper exchange system to easily process such areas with smaller grippers and patches. In addition to that, now Cevotec’s newly developed rolling motion feature comes into play.

Instead of applying the patch along a single normal, the contact point rolls along a curve (fig. b)) with a different normal for each point of the curve. This behavior is inspired by the rolling movement of a wheel, where the same two points of the wheel and the surface never come into contact. Since the gripper needs to fulfill complex movements, Cevotec’s SAMBA Scale and Multi cells feature six-axis-robots as gripper manipulators. Based on the curvature of the patch, the best contact curve for this purpose is automatically calculated by the FPP-specific ARTIST STUDIO software. This makes it easy for engineers to use this new feature.

The rolling motion is another key development in Cevotec’s continuous efforts to further increase productivity and flexibility of SAMBA production cells. It is our objective to provide the most powerful systems for the production of complex composites on the market.

About Cevotec:

Munich-based automation specialist Cevotec enables manufacturers to build complex composites in high volume and quality. With Fiber Patch Placement based SAMBA systems, Cevotec offers customized, fully automated fiber layup systems with integrated process control for manufacturing complex 3D geometries and multi-material laminates. ARTIST STUDIO is the technology-specific CAD-CAM software for generating patch-based fiber laminates and automated robot programming. Cost and time reductions of 20-60% can be realized when switching from manual layup to Cevotec’s SAMBA systems. Manufacturers also benefit from a comprehensive service portfolio, including application-specific customizations and FE-based component development.

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