Concurrent Conference Sessions

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Design & Manufacturing Software
9:30 AM-11:30 AM

9:30 AM-10:00 AM
Designing Thick Laminate Rotor Components for Producibility
Bill Cleary, Manufacturing Research & Development, Bell Helicopter

  • Assess part requirements for suitability for automation
  • Simplify designs for robust processing
  • Determine how to balance design and manufacturing requirements

Helicopter rotor components present some of the most demanding engineering structural requirements due to the changing dynamics associated with rotating airfoils. Advanced composites are ideally suited for these requirements, especially for the fatigue requirements associated with the various flight envelope load cases. Typically the components are designed for maximum performance in regards to weight and durability which often results in designs that are expensive and difficult to produce. The Relentless 525 main rotor grip was designed to balance performance with producibility. The presentation will describe how these difficult engineering requirements were incorporated into a structural component that was well suited for automation and maximized Bell Helicopter’s ability to efficiently produce a cost effective solution.

10:00 AM-10:30 AM
Prediction of Manufacturing Induced Shape Distortion of Composites Parts Through Simulation
Mathilde Chabin, Corporate Business Dev & Product Marketing, Campus de Ker Lann

  • Predict shape distortion induced by manufacturing
  • Increase product quality
  • Reduce process development time
  • Minimize number of prototypes

It has been demonstrated that a computational based approach can be used reliably nowadays to optimize the forming process of dry textiles as well as to design best manufacturing strategy for composites parts made by resin injection or infusion in a preform. Similarly, computational techniques can be used to predict serious issues, such as wrinkling or bridging, when forming thermoplastic or thermoset pre-preg materials. However, one of the biggest challenges for designers and manufacturers of composites-parts nowadays is to ensure that designed parts can be produced within tolerance that will cause no issue at the assembly stage. This paper will present a comprehensive approach for simulating various composites manufacturing processes and resulting shape distortions whether the part is cured in autoclave or out-of-autoclave. Computational techniques developed to predict manufacturing-induced residual stresses and shape distortion of composites parts made of continuous fibers and thermoset matrix will be presented supported by industrial examples.

10:30 AM-11:00 AM
Tailored Fiber Placement for Composites Applications
Tommy Fristed, President, LayStitch Technologies

  • Upon completion, the participants will be able to describe what applications TFP may bring benefits and improved value
  • The participant will be able to define a typical design procedure for a TFP preform
  • The participant will be able to describe benefits of optimizing product topology for improved performance to a lower cost

New software design tools and scaleable production technology allows automated tailored fiber placement (TFP) to be used for high-volume preform production. Tailoring the fiber orientation and fiber placement/distribution within the part enables better utilization of the fiber strength and therefore improves performance of the part. Various application examples and preform designs will be presented along with resulting benefits.

11:00 AM-11:30 AM
Production Rate Up, Price Down - Improved Process Management, From the Freezer to the Autoclave, Reduces Costs and Enables Better Quality Control in High-Rate Production Environments
Avner Ben-Bassat, President & CEO, Platane Inc.

  • Implement new technology for optimizing and automating the composite cutting process, to reduce waste and thus costs
  • Automatically and Optimally bridge the gap between existing software (such as ERP, MES and CAD) to streamline the production process reducing labor requirements
  • Reduce bottlenecks, improve production flow and reduce material waste though tracking of products in real time
  • Gain precise real-time location and identification of products to reduce labor and ultimately costs

After ramping up from prototype stage through first production run and then onto full capacity production, management must start to ask "how do we edge our costs down while adhering to the customers’ quality and increasing quantity requirements?”. Numerous areas are critical in this regard such as: cut planning, material usage, labor, machine utilization, delivery schedule and quality control. Addressing these challenges requires dealing with seemingly conflicting objectives: “How can we better automate and optimize our processes by planning in advance, using less raw material, reducing manual labor, ensuring our expensive machinery is being optimally utilized, resulting in higher production rates while not compromising on quality?” The process of cutting, kitting and laying up pre-pregs is critical. Tracking materials, kits and their progress through the production line is essential. Repeating this process consistently throughout the production run is crucial for quality control. The paper discusses an integrated software solution that integrates with existing software (ERP, MES and CAD) to receive real-time critical data, allows for an automated holistic approach to planning, producing, automating and optimizing. Sophisticated algorithms ensure optimized material yield, reduced labor and ramped up manufacturing rates, while utilizing RFID to enable managing and tracking of materials and kits.

Fab, Assembly & Repair Processes
9:30 AM-11:30 AM

9:30 AM-10:00 AM
Complete Automation of After Mould Processes of Wind Blades.
Gustavo Lasierra Ferrer, Project & Product Manager, Estudios de Inegniería Adaptada (EINA)

  • List the steps of a fully automated production of a wind blade (after mould)
  • Roughly describe how the used technogy works
  • Think on new automations they hadn´t thought jet it was possible

We want to explain what it's been automated and how did we achieved our goal. The machine is able to carry out the following tasks: - Measure the blade after the mould. - Trimm the edge with 1mm accuracy with regards to the shells. - Calculate the form of the blade tip and mill it. - Sand 100% of the surface in order to activate it - An infrared system with a new software detect any possible failure in the assembly of the shells. - Failures are evaluated, and if holes have to be filled, the machine drills inlet and aulet drills for the glue. - Quality, the machine reads the real form of the blade and compares against the CAD. The key feature is a robotic tracking head which processes the input data taken from the composite’s surface, and creates new trajectories for the robot. This process is made on real time, so the tool (sander, saw, cotton drum, solvent sprayer…) keeps pressure, distance, orientation with regards to the surface being treated. Robots became just slaves of the tracking Head.

10:00 AM-10:30 AM
Automation of CFRP-Product6ion Tasks, Technologies and Solutions
Markus Schmider, Segment Manager Composites, J. Schmalz GmbH

  • Better understand the challenges of handling all kinds of composite materials
  • Get a proper idea on what (new) handling technologies are available for an efficient, automated CFRP part production
  • Understand how new technologies like electrically driven grippers not only allow to reduce operation costs but also improve the process monitoring with the integrated I/O link technology

The paper presents latest results in the field of automation along the value chain of carbon fiber reinforced plastic production – the key to reduce process costs and to generate salable products. To handle the workpieces during the complete production process reliably, several gripper technologies are needed. The choice of the right technology depends on the characteristics of the material, the characteristics of the workpiece and the process. Standard vacuum cups are nor suitable to handle the porous fabrics and delicate materials. Hence new technologies like special composite grippers or needle grippers are required. This paper covers new technologies and solutions for the automated CFRP manufacturing.

10:30 AM-11:00 AM
Breakthrough Composite Manufacturing Technology: Lessons Learned from NASA's Max Launch Abort System Project
Nick Bullen, CEO, Smart Blades Inc.

The presentation will describe the innovative technologies and processes derived from the highly successful Max Launch Abort System (MLAS) program. The presentation also describes the impact that the revolutionary MLAS technologies and processes will have on other manufactured products. The MLAS project system design, manufacturing technologies, and processes are extensible beyond space launch vehicle prototypes. Several examples of extensible MLAS-MTP to be presented are rapid prototyping, advanced analytics, forensic engineering analysis, out of autoclave cure (OAC), and low cost VARTM processes, and rapid precision assembly. Two unrelated aerospace extensions to be presented are automobiles and wind turbines. Also, the rapid design, development, manufacture, and launch of the MLAS vehicle using geographically diverse best athletes combined to produce a complex vehicle in a very short time is described. The process to enable and facilitate the rapid manufacture of the MLAS vehicle is a valued capability that is detailed to provide a building block for use by other product types.

11:00 AM-11:30 AM
Composite Automotive Structural Repair
Lou Dorworth, Division Manager - Direct Services, Abaris Training Resources, Inc.

This presentation highlights standard methods of damage assessment, inspection, damage removal, and various approaches to repairs currently practiced within industry, and how these same principles can be applied to repair of carbon fiber reinforced composite structures within the automotive sector. Current damage removal and repair techniques employed by other industries. Possible adaptation of new rapid cure polymers for automotive structural repairs. What it will take to prepare the current and future workforce.

Tooling for Composite Applications
9:30 AM-11:30 AM

9:30 AM-10:00 AM
CFRP Co-cured Winglet Development
Joseph Sweetin, Material & Process Engineer, and Lisa Carlson, Material & Process Engineer, The Boeing Company

Development approach & technology readiness for production transition - Design criteria and sub-scale Development focus areas - Co-Cure manufacturing & tooling approach for unitized winglet structure

10:00 AM-10:30 AM
Carbon Foam Composite Tooling
Brian Joseph, Touchstone Research Laboratory

CFOAM Carbon foam is a high temperature low coefficient of thermal expansion material which is proving to be useful in the production of composite tooling. The presentation will cover various methods to build low-cost rapid prototype tools, durable rate tooling, high temperature tooling, CFOAM carbon foam masters and electrically heated tooling.

In addition to the technical presentation, building costs will be discussed.

10:30 AM-11:00 AM
Invar Tooling - Separating the Facts From the Fallacies
Steve Abberger, VP - Technical Services, Re-Steel Supply Company

  • Review basics of Invar material origin and properties
  • Discuss current and innovative Invar tooling applications and designs
  • Present key characteristics of Invar (pro & con) useful in making an informed material selection for upcoming tooling needs

11:00 AM-11:30 AM
Machined Monolithic Graphic Tooling
Kevin Anderson, ETM Sales Manager and Les Dod, ETM Operations Manager, ELECTRO-TECH MACHINING

Additive Manufacturing
1:30 PM-3:30 PM

1:30 PM-2:00 PM
Strategy/Business Development, Additive Technologies
Greg Morris, Additive Technologies Leader, NPI Value Stream, GE Aviation

  • Overview of Additive Manufacturing technologies
  • Applications of AM in the Aerospace field
  • Review of some Gaps and Challenges of AM

2:00 PM-2:30 PM
In-situ Synthesis of Functionally Gradient Metal Matrix Composites by Laser Direct Deposition
Yung Shin, PhD, Professor, Purdue University

  • Upon completion, participants will see how laser additive process works to build metal matrix composite
  • Upon completion, participants will see how to synthesize functionally gradient metal matrix composites
  • Upon completion, participants will see how to achieve customized properties by the gradient metal matrix composites

Functionally gradient material (FGM) is tailored based on the structural requirements of the final product. In this study, titanium carbide (TiC) reinforcement particles were deposited on Inconel 690 with Laser Engineered Net Shaping (LENS©) to build functionally graded ceramic metal composites (CMCs). The microstructures and distribution of TiC particles were characterized with SEM and EDS. There was a near absence of internal voids in the uncoated TiC particles. The ratios of Inconel 690 to TiC in the depositions varied from 0-40% volume. A drastic evolution in the microstructure was observed with increasing TiC percentages and the presence of carbide particles coincided with a refinement of the matrix microstructure and introduction of a finely dispersed crystalline phase. High-temperature dissolution of titanium carbide was not detected. Micro-hardness and tribological behavior of the structure were analyzed. The results show a significant correlation between TiC content and wear resistance. Synthesis of other metal matrix composites will also be highlighted.

2:30 PM-3:00 PM
Printed Soluble Tooling for Composites
Brett Lyons, Material & Process Engineer, Boeing Research & Technology

  • Introduction & Explanation
  • Materials
  • Applications

3:00 PM-3:30 PM
Development of Low Cost Composite Materials for the Fused Filament Fabrication Process
Arif Sirinterlikci, PhD, Professor of Engineering and Interim Head, Robert Morris University

  • Understand development of new materials for additive manufacturing
  • Understand the inner-workings and accuracy of the FFF process and its hardware
  • Match these potential materials with various applications

This presentation focuses on an attempt to elevate the Fused Filament Fabrication process to a different level with development of new low cost composite materials. The main objective is to find feasible applications to the FFF process by improving its materials set.

Bonding, Prep & Inspection Processes
1:30 PM-3:30 PM

1:30 PM-2:00 PM
Detection of Treatment Level & Contaimination on Prepared Surfaces: Quality Assurance for Adhesive Bonding
Giles Dillingham, PhD, President, Brighton Technologies Group, Inc.

  • Gain an understanding of the fundamental relationship between wetting and adhesion
  • Learn how these concepts can be applied to understand the role of surface preparation
  • Learn how to judge the quality and consistency of surface treatment using relatively simple and rapid measurements of surface wetting properties

The relationships between surface properties (such as chemical composition, contamination, roughness) and adhesive bond performance will be reviewed on a fundamental level. The effect of typical industrial pretreatment processes will be reviewed along with their effect on adhesion. Finally, examples of the use of wetting and contact angle measurements as rapid, non-destructive probes of surface quality and consistency will be discussed along with their implementation in manufacturing and repair scenarios.

2:00 PM-2:30 PM
Laser Bond Inspection: NDT Technology for Determining Bond Strength
David Sokol, PhD, Director of Research and Development, LSP Technologies, Inc.

  • Discuss the characteristics of the laser bond inspection shock wave
  • Describe how the laser bond inspection determines bond strength
  • Understand the types of shock waves generated by laser bond inspection

Adhesively bonded composite aerospace structures present challenges to certification agencies because of potential bond line failures. Of particular concern is the detection of ‘kissing bonds”. These bonds have intimate contact between bonded surfaces, but have essentially zero strength. Conventional nondestructive testing (NDT) techniques such as ultrasonics, x-ray radiography, and thermography are unable to reliably detect these bonds. However, a laser based technology developed at LSP Technologies, Inc. (LSPT) called laser bond inspection (LBI) has demonstrated NDT of adhesive bonds from 0-100% of full strength. LBI is a technique that utilizes laser produced stress waves to probe bond strength in the plastic regime of material behavior. These internal stress waves locally proof test a bond interface as part of the nondestructive evaluation process. Weak bonds fail under a design tension test load while strong bonds survive. Extensive experimental developments at LSP Technologies, supported by 1-D and 2-D hydrodynamic code simulations have demonstrated that the strength of adhesive bonds can be tested using calibrated stress waves. Additional testing has shown that “Kissing bonds” can be detected by using low intensity (laser induced) stress waves. LSPT will present recent test results from LBI of composite samples.

2:30 PM-3:00 PM
Atmospheric Pressure Plasma as a Method for Improving Adhesive Bolnding
Thomas Williams, PhD., Aerospace Materials Processing

  • Atmospheric pressure plasma
  • Adhesive bonding
  • Surface activation of plastics and composites
  • Environmentally friendly processing

Atmospheric pressure plasma treatment is an alternative surface preparation method for plastics and organic matrix composites prior to structural adhesive bonding. The atmospheric pressure plasmas are a promising technique for replacing traditional methods of surface preparation by manual sanding, grit blasting, peel ply, or wet chemistry. All surfaces studied were converted from a hydrophobic state into a hydrophilic state with a water contact angles of <40°. Atomic force microscopy confirmed that plasma activation resulted in only minor changes to the composite surface structure. Characterization of the composite surfaces by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy revealed an increase in oxygen content following plasma treatment. After plasma activation, the composite surfaces displayed specific chemical changes, i.e., the formation of alcohols, ketones or aldehydes and carboxylic acid groups. Lap shear testing showed that after plasma activation, the strength can be increased from ~50% up to several fold over that achieved by either solvent wiping or abrasion depending on the material used. The trends in adhesion with plasma exposure time do not correlate well with surface wetting or roughness; instead they correlate with the fraction of the polymer surface sites that are converted into carboxylic acid functional groups. The data to be presented will include and detailed bond failure mode evaluations in hot-wet environmental conditions and double cantilever beam testing.


3:00 PM-3:30 PM
Automated Surface Preparation and Other Robotic Applications
Gustavo Lasierra Ferrer, Project & Product Manager, Estudios de Inegniería Adaptada (EINA), and Enric Vila Papell, Technical and Research Manager – Technical and Research Manager, Estudios de Ingeniería Adaptada (EINA)

  • Describe how the technology works and which their advantages are
  • New automation possibilities
  • List new tasks a robot can carry out
  • Describe what it's already being done at some aerospace and windblades manufacturers

Presentation of a recent robotic patent which makes possible the automation of many after mould processes.(sanding, trimming, cleaning, quality inspection, gluing). Thanks to this technology, most of those processes have already been successfully automated within aeronautics and wind mill sectors. The patent provides the robots with some kind of “touch” sense, which makes possible the adaptation of robot’s behavior to the position of the part at every moment. Prior attempts had failed because of the size of some composite parts, the huge size and position tolerances, the difficulty to place the same part twice at exactly the same position, and the lack of stability( vibrations, bending…) The key feature is a robotic tracking head which processes the input data taken from the composite’s surface, and creates new trajectories for the robot. This process is made on real time, so the tool (sander, saw, cotton drum, solvent sprayer…) keeps pressure, distance, orientation with regards to the surface being treated. Robots became just slaves of the tracking Head. Tools are the same currently used in manual processes (randomorbitalsanders, circular saws, cotton rags….) Complex and expensive fixtures are fully unnecessary. Thanks to this human-like behavior of robots, they adapt themselves to any bending, vibration, movement, position change.

CAD/CAM & Software
1:30 PM-3:30 PM

1:30 PM-2:00 PM
How Automated Fiber Placement Path Planning Affects Design
Tim McDonald, CG Tech

  • Learn about improvements in speed, accuracy and reliability with Automated Fiber Placement equipment
  • Discover how part curvature, fiber direction, and material limits affect the layup strategy
  • See how the AFP process affects lay-down path, part quality and rate
  • View a variety of AFP path trajectory methods, why they’re used and how they can deviate from an idealized design concept

Automated Fiber Placement equipment has dramatically improved in speed, accuracy and reliability in recent years. Combined with more accurate and faster robot motion platforms and lower cost slit tape tow materials, Automated Fiber Placement (AFP) is poised to become the primary method for automatically laying up composite structures, charges, and skins. It is more important than ever for design and engineering teams to understand basic APF layup practices and how they affect the physical material placement and actual fiber directions in the physical workpiece. This session will show a variety of AFP path trajectory methods, why they’re used and how they can deviate from an idealized design concept.

2:00 PM-2:30 PM
The Virtual Factory for Composite Material and Structures
Rani Richardson, CATIA Composites Consutant, Dassault Systemes and Dr. Byron Pipes, Purdue University

The composites virtual factory is a manufacturing simulation-based platform that will provide browser access to the physics-based simulations of the elements in specific composites manufacturing processes to allow virtual construction of manufacturing processes such as compression molding, injection molding, transfer molding, resin infusion, pultrusion, filament winding, advanced fiber placement, autoclave lamination, sheet forming, stretch forming and additive manufacturing. In addition, simulations of work flow disfunction recognition and constraint driven models will necessary as well. The ability to construct virtual manufacturing processes allows engineers to assess the relative merits of each manufacturing approach for specific products without investing in the facilities required for such a comparison using the empirical approach. The Composites Virtual Factory HUB ( is based on the HUB-based platform, developed by NSF as the nanoHUB over the past decade with an investment of almost $30 million. HUBZero was developed as a platform available for delivery and development of communities in specific areas of technology. The Composites Virtual Factory HUB ( will support OEM simulation requirements and provide browser access for the Tier 1 and Tier 2 suppliers to simulation tools via the internet and the appropriate level of computational power secured by cloud computing on the platform. Tier 1 companies are direct suppliers to OEMs. Tier 2 companies are the key suppliers to Tier 1 suppliers, without supplying a product directly to OEM companies, yet the Tier 2 company typically has little or no access to composites manufacturing simulation tools. Thus, the focus of the Composites Virtual Manufacturing HUB will be fill this important need.

2:30 PM-3:00 PM
3D Process Analytics for Carbon Composite Manufacturing
Tom Sharp, PhD, Principal, Nlign Analytics

Show how 3D visualization of process data can be used for process optimization to reduce scrap and rework. Show how this same 3D visualization can be used to improve MRB processes. Introduce the Digital Thread concept, specifically discussing the value of a link between 3D manufacturing process data and in-service repair applications.

3:00 PM-3:30 PM
Finite Element Modeling of Carbon Fiber Composite Oblique Cutting and Drilling
Troy Marusich, Ph.D., Third Wave Systems

  • Understand how finite element methods apply to machining of CFRP materials
  • Determine cutting forces and tool stresses via simulation and how they correlate to cutter design
  • Identify potential CFRP component delamination areas with simulation of machining process prior to prototype tests

Drilling of carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) is widely practiced in the aerospace industry. During drilling, this leads to fiber-directional dependent micromechanical damage, delamination and fiber pull-out. Nonlinear, large deformation Lagrangian formulation with explicit time integration scheme is employed with cohesive element insertion [1,2]. The workpiece is modeled by a structured mesh, which is aligned to the fiber orientation and laminar of the composite. Through a combination of dynamic cohesive element insertion and structured mesh element splitting, each unidirectional laminar, transverse crack, fiber bending and fiber breaking is modeled. This process allows the crack propagation path to be driven by element stresses and guided by fiber orientation. Unidirectional fiber composite orthogonal cutting experiments were conducted for 0, -45, 45 and 90 degree fiber orientation. The failure modes and the cutting forces of the finite element model were validated against the experiments. Drilling experiments are performed on a Mori-Seiki NH6300 horizontal machine tool. Thrust and torque measurements are collected using a Kistler dynamometer. In drilling, the workpiece is modeled by layers of unidirectional fibers of 0, -45, 45 and 90 degree fiber orientation. Validation is performed through the comparison of predicted and measured torque and thrust force.