Manufacturing of composite parts reinforced through-thickness by tufting

G. Dell'Anno*, J. W G Treiber, Ivana K Partridge

*Corresponding author for this work

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

62 Citations (Scopus)
1621 Downloads (Pure)


The paper aims at providing practical guidelines for the manufacture of composite parts reinforced by tufting. The need for through-thickness reinforcement of high performance carbon fibre composite structures is reviewed and various options are presented. The tufting process is described in detail and relevant aspects of the technology are analysed such as: equipment configuration and setup, latest advances in tooling, thread selection, preform supporting systems and choice of ancillary materials. Effects of the process parameters on the preform fibre architecture and on the meso-structure of the reinforced component are discussed. Special emphasis is given to the different options available in terms of tuft insertion and loops management. Potential fields of application of the technology are investigated as well as the limitations of its applicability in relation to preform nature and geometry. Critical issues which may arise during the manufacturing process concerning thread insertion, loops formation, alteration to the fabric fibres layout or local volume fraction are identified.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)262-272
Number of pages11
JournalRobotics and Computer-Integrated Manufacturing
Early online date5 May 2015
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2016


  • Tufting
  • Through-thickness reinforcement
  • Preform
  • 3D reinforcement
  • Composites
  • Stitching
  • TTR


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