Forming of composite materials is more challenging than forming of conventional materials, such as metals, because their complexity often renders predictive modelling intractable. However, relying on experiments and rigid tooling is also time-consuming, costly and provides limited scope. Conversely, faster production speeds require processes that can be applied to a range of geometries while maintaining control to reduce forming defects. In recent literature, the positive influence of clamping along the periphery of a blank has been established, notably in preventing wrinkling. In this work, we propose a method for facilitating the creation of challenging geometries by changing the boundary conditions in a flexible manner. This method allows for direct adjustment of local stress conditions and can be automated and optimised for a diverse range of part geometries. We present a purpose-built rig to test this concept and preliminary results confirming its efficacy.
|Number of pages||6|
|Early online date||30 Dec 2019|
|Publication status||Published - 31 Dec 2019|