AZL REVIEWS ONGOING RESEARCH PROJECTS WITH PARTNERS
During the Annual Partner Meeting, the key strategic meeting of the partner network, AZL presented and reviewed all ongoing activities of the past AZL season.
This also included the current research projects: BIO-FML, AZL´s role in Aachen´s Cluster of Excellence “Internet of Production” and the Research Campus Digital Photonic Production (DPP).
In the publicly funded project “Bio-FML”, a fully recyclable fiber-metal laminate (FML) is being developed in cooperation with the project partners. The FML consists of two laser-structured, metallic cover layers and a core made of natural fiber-reinforced plastic and can be used, for example, for the production of air freight or residential containers. In the project, a continuous and cost-effective manufacturing system is being developed that will enable efficient series production of the material.
AZL´s role in Aachen´s Cluster of Excellence “Internet of Production”
The currently ongoing 4th industrial revolution has shifted manufacturing paradigms from mass production to the so-called mass customization. Manufactured parts are adapted increasingly rapidly and individual customer requirements are gaining in importance. Hence, the Internet of Production excellence cluster is researching and developing new architectures, algorithms and methods to increase production flexibility and adaptability to changing product requirements. Key aspects represent faster reconfiguration of flexible machine systems, fundamental interactions between process and product quality and interconnection of production systems to decrease machine downtimes and enable fast and flexible production rescheduling.
Especially in lightweight production, where material anisotropy and heterogeneity, as well as the wide production process landscape shape the manufacturing processes, these topics possess high potential for increasing part quality, reducing scrap and waste and decreasing cycle times, resulting in faster product time-to-markets and reduced costs. Using the demonstrator process of high-volume automated tape placement, the AZL investigates the use of digital process and product shadows as well as connected, self-configuring and self-adaptive production assets.
Research Campus Digital Photonic Production (DPP)
The Research Campus is setting out to develop new methods and fundamental physical effects for using light as a production tool. Focus of the AZL is the laser-assisted processing of continuous fiber reinforced materials like towpreg, dry fiber and thermoplastic tape. Furthermore, the AZL develops cost calculations and evaluations of lightweight production process chains.
Continuous Functionalisation of Lightweight Structural Materials in the Roll to roll Process through Printed Electronics and Hybrid Integration – Konfutius
In the publicly funded project KonFutius (funded by the European Union and the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, funding code: EFRE-0801581; project partners besides AZL: Fraunhofer IPT, Fraunhofer ILT, Polyscale, Leister) the continuous production of ultralight composite LED panels is investigated. With the specially developed, inductively heating double belt press, the FRP carrier structure is continuously produced at the AZL and automatically cut to size in the cutting module. In the subsequent processes, the frame, the LEDs and the functional layers are built up and the components are welded. The fully automated process can save up to 65% costs compared to conventional LED panels with metal frames. By replacing the fluorescent tubes widely used in public spaces with the new composite LED panels, the CO2 emissions caused can also be reduced by 68%.
You can find more information on these topics here: