Sensors, IoT platforms, data analytics — the tools for more intelligent, efficient manufacturing abound, but where to start is actually much simpler.
Senior Editor, CompositesWorld
There are numerous methods for fabricating composite components. Selection of a method for a particular part, therefore, will depend on the materials, the part design and end-use or application. Here's a guide to selection.
Designers of composite parts can choose from a huge variety of fiber reinforcements and resin systems. That makes knowledge of how those materials work together a critically important aspect of part development. Here's a short description of what that knowledge entails.
Fibers used to reinforce composites are supplied directly by fiber manufacturers and indirectly by converters in a number of different forms, which vary depending on the application. Here's a guide to what's available.
Demand for advanced fiber, virgin and reclaimed, is on an upswing after a dip during the recent recession. Fiber suppliers are gearing up to meet an expected increase in demand as manufacturers in a number of composites end-markets scale up or start up part development and production programs
The structural properties of composite materials are derived primarily from the fiber reinforcement. Fiber types, their manufacture, their uses and the end-market applications in which they find most use are described.
High strength at low weight remain the winning combination that propels composite materials into new arenas, but other properties are equally important. This article outlines the case for composites and introduces SourceBook's overview of the materials and processes used to make them.
The matrix binds the fiber reinforcement, gives the composite component its shape and determines its surface quality. A composite matrix may be a polymer, ceramic, metal or carbon. Here’s a guide to selection.
Compared to legacy materials like steel, aluminum, iron and titanium, composites are still coming of age, and only just now are being better understood by design and manufacturing engineers. However, composites’ physical properties — combined with unbeatable light weight — make them undeniably attractive.
The old art behind this industry’s first fiber reinforcement is explained,with insights into new fiber science and future developments.
Composite parts are formed in molds, also known as tools. Tools can be made from virtually any material. The material type, shape and complexity depend upon the part and length of production run. Here's a short summary of the issues involved in electing and making tools.