Automated tape laying (ATL) and automated fiber placement (AFP) are processes that use numerically controlled machines to lay one or several layers of carbon fiber material onto a mold to create a structure.


Recent advancements in automated composite fabrication machines are generating much excitement – and with good reason. Driven mostly by aerospace, but with technology quickly transferring to other industries, productive automated composite lay-up machinery is a reality. One of our goals here is to help bring about understanding and transparency to the process of programming automated composite machinery by introducing the key components of machine independent off-line programming software. We will discuss key terms, applications, design for manufacturability, and supplemental processes to fiber placement.