Heater power control for multi-material, variable speed Automated Fibre Placement

Mattia Di Francesco, Laura Veldenz, Giuseppe Dell'Anno, Kevin Potter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)
611 Downloads (Pure)


Automated Fibre Placement requires accurate control of the heater power to deposit the material at appropriate temperatures throughout the process. This paper presents a simple semi-empirical thermal model of the process which correlates the heater power and the layup speed with the substrate surface temperature. The deposition temperature was measured over a range of heater powers and layup speeds. The experimental data is used to define and validate a semi-empirical thermal model for two classes of materials used in conjunction with a diode laser: carbon fibre reinforced thermoplastics and bindered dry fibres. This enables open-loop, speed dependent heater power control, based on defining and programming the speed dependent heater power function in the machine controls.
Original languageEnglish
JournalComposites Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing
Early online date19 Jun 2017
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 19 Jun 2017


  • A. Polymer-matrix composites (PMCs)
  • B. Thermal properties
  • C. Process Modelling
  • D. Automated fibre placement (AFP)


Dive into the research topics of 'Heater power control for multi-material, variable speed Automated Fibre Placement'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this