Performing high-speed events “on-the-fly” during fabrication of a composite structure by automated fiber placement

  • US 7,513,965 B2
  • Filed: 04/21/2005
  • Issued: 04/07/2009
  • Est. Priority Date: 04/21/2004
  • Status: Active Grant
First Claim
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1. A method for performing at least one of cutting or adding a tow, changing tension, temperature, or pressure applied on a tow, on the fly, herein referred to as a high-speed event, in an automated fiber placement process using a fiber placement head of a fiber placement machine for fabricating a composite structure, the method comprising the steps of:

  • determining a time-based tool path for the fiber placement head during fabrication of the composite part, including a completion location of the fiber placement head along the tool path at which it is desired to have completed the high-speed event;

    determining a latency value for the fiber placement machine to perform the high-speed event; and

    using the latency value to determine an initiation location of the fiber placement head along the tool path disposed sufficiently in advance of the completion location such that initiation of the desired high-speed event at the initiation location of the fiber placement head results in completion of the desired high-speed event substantially at the completion location of the fiber placement head.

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