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6th March 2018, Paris

Cevotec to establish FPP technology in North America

Munich-based Fibre Patch Placement specialist Cevotec has partnered with Composite Automation to introduce its composite additive manufacturing technology to the North American market. The collaboration expands the range of advanced process technologies for fibre composites available to North American manufacturers.

“We are very happy to have John Melilli and his team at Composite Automation to introduce the benefits of patch technology to every composite manufacturer in North America. As a result of the positive feedback we received at CAMX 2017, we became convinced of the need to have a proactive presence in North America and Composite Automation is laser-focused on the markets we are pursuing,” said Thorsten Groene, Managing Director of Cevotec.

Demand for automation solutions

Nominated for the JEC Innovation Award this year, Cevotec’s Fibre Patch Placement process drew strong attention at CAMX 2017, demonstrating the demand for automation solutions in the composites industry, the company reports.

Samba Pro Fiber Patch Placement production cell. © Cevotec

“Increasing throughput, first pass quality, reducing waste and reducing reliance on touch labour are driving manufacturers to look for innovative automation solutions. Cevotec offers just that – flexible lay-up systems based on additive patch technology. Their Composites-4.0-approach with a powerful software suite focuses on especially complex parts. We are delighted to represent them in North America and believe that Cevotec’s technology will replace many hand lay-up applications,” commented John Melilli, President of Composite Automation.

Samba production cells

Cevotec has recently announced major extensions to its Samba production cells. Since 2018, the automated lay-up systems also process thermoset prepreg tape, effectively replacing manual lay-up operations for complex parts. Standard AFP / ATL tape can also be fed into the Samba systems, offering an efficient outlet for residual tape material on bobbins from AFP / ATL processes. On the software side, the CAD-CAM platform Artist Studio for patch placement will be extended through a plug-in for commercial FEA software, enabling the efficient modelling and FE analysis of fibre patch laminates.

“This technology is truly disruptive. From the design to the fabrication of the part, the complete process is managed by the Cevotec software and automation system. The full properties of the part are known before the part is manufactured. Reliable throughputs and material usage are empirically understood. This data is part of the justification for a machine acquisition,” added John Melilli. “Fibre Patch Placement is a must-have technology for companies that want to be ahead of their competitors in the manufacture of composite parts.”

As part of the collaboration, Composite Automation now acts as the official representative for Cevotec in the US, Canada and Mexico, offering the entire product portfolio, including Cevotec’s “technology-as-a-service” offerings. With services ranging from laminate design and FE analyses to prototyping and manufacturing, manufacturers have multiple options to evaluate patch technology for their applications.

Smart process automation

Cevotec enables manufacturers to build complex fibre composites in high volume – by smart process automation based on Fibre Patch Placement technology. With Samba Series, Cevotec offers tailored, automated fibre lay-up systems for challenging 3D geometries and laminates with complex fibre orientation.

Artist Studio is the matching CAD-CAM software for generating patch-based fibre laminates and automated robot programming. Along with development services that include FE-based modelling and simulation, Cevotec offers the entire process chain from digital design to final composites product.

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