In this study an automated composite layup end effector is presented which is the first to be able to find defects in real time during layup using tactile shape sensing. Based around an existing sensor concept developed by the Bristol Robot Laboratory known as the ‘TacTip’, a new end effector is developed, replacing the soft gel core of the original sensor was replaced by a much firmer elastomer, enabling it to apply up to 400N of compaction force. In this paper it is shown to successfully detect typical defects such as wrinkles, foreign objects, layup errors or incorrect material types while simultaneously compacting preimpregnated composite materials over complex mould shapes.
- Bristol Composites Institute ACCIS
- Carbon Fibre
- Foreign Object