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Exploring the discrete tools used by laminators in composites manufacturing: application of novel concept

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)185-198
Number of pages14
JournalAdvanced Manufacturing: Polymer and Composites Science
Issue number4
Early online date27 Nov 2015
DateAccepted/In press - 4 Oct 2015
DateE-pub ahead of print - 27 Nov 2015
DatePublished (current) - Dec 2015


This research investigates the handheld and often personally owned tools used by laminators to form advanced composites into components for aerospace, defense, and autosport; and reports on the application of a novel concept. The lack of formal knowledge that surrounds the existence and use of these tools presents an opportunity to explore what significance they have for process standardization and composites’ design and manufacture. The paper presents results from layup trials that were performed to test a prototyped tool, designed with user-centered and geometry-driven research in mind. The trials showed tool use is aligned with the laminator’s goals for the layup task; and suggest that it is also used as the laminator’s method for reporting quality feedback. The trials also raised questions about why the laminators habitually use their tools and the necessity of supporting a laminator through the decision processes involved in a layup task. This suggests the development of a prototyped tool can be of significant benefit in the realm of skills and training.

    Research areas

  • Tools, Hand lamination, Layup trials, Composites, Manufacturing, Skills and training

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  • Carwyn_20550340%2E2015%2E1105613

    Rights statement: © 2016 The Author(s). Published by Taylor & Francis. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

    Final published version, 3.8 MB, PDF document

    Licence: CC BY


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