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FEM and Simulation of Manufacturing Processes

Simulation is a very important step in the design, manufacturing and usage of composite parts. For the production of composites by resin infusion AAC can provide the information on the following aspects:

  • Draping simulation for the determination of fiber orientation and searing of the dry preform.
  • Infiltration simulation for the determination of the process time, determination of critical location in the part like pores and dry spots, definition of the best suited injection strategy
  • Spring-In simulation – deformation of the part after demoulding, redesign of the mold for the compensation of spring-in effects
  • Thermal simulation for the determination of heating– and cooling time, determination of thermal gradients, definition of best suited heating / cooling strategies
  • Mechanical simulation – determination of deformations due to injection pressure, design of molding concepts

Beside process relevant simulation, AAC provide standard thermal, structural and multi-physical FE simulations including structural behavior of composite and hybrid composite – metal structures using different state of the art failure models for first ply failure and progressive damage. simulation methods_1The following simulation tools are available at AAC:

ANSYS – Multiphysics / ACP

FEM simulation, thermal and mechanical (static, dynamic) behavior ACP: ANSYS Composite Pre-Post Analysis


RTM: classical isothermal closed mold resin transfer molding. VARI: Vacuum Assisted Resin Infusion. Isothermal injection under deformable plastic film. The thickness and permeability change of the fiber reinforcement is taken into account. Heated RTM: non-isothermal RTM. Heat exchanges between resin, fiber reinforcement and mold is taken into account. The effect of resin polymerization on viscosity and heat generation can also be taken into account. Preheating: heating of the mold and fiber reinforcement before filling. The possibly non-uniform temperature distribution at the end of preheating can be used to initialize Heated RTM simulation. Curing: post-filling resin cure. By default, assumes that the cavity is completely filled and the initial temperature and degree of cure is uniform. Otherwise the results of the Heated RTM simulation (filling factor, temperature, degree of cure) can be used to initialize the curing simulation. Pre-simulation: this simulation allows a first approximation of the filling time and flow. QUIK-FORM: draping analysis of fiber reinforcements (bi-directional fabrics and unidirectional). Alfalam: Laminate theory, MS Excel, [ABD] matrix, Puck failure criteria eLamX: Laminate theory, Java, [ABD] matrix, 3D failure envelope plots LamiCens: Laminate theory, MS Excel, [A] Matrix, Graphics Texgen: Generation of texture TexGen is open source software licensed under the General Public License developed at the University of Nottingham for modelling the geometry of textile structures. MyRTM: myRTM is an easy-to-use program for simulating the mould-filling phase of the Resin Transfer Molding (RTM) process. CADEC: Computer Aided Design Environment for Composites, Laminate theory, [ABDH] matrix, FEM application

Mathematical simulation

Maxima: Computer algebra system, matrix manipulation, manipulation of symbolic and numerical expressions, differentiation, integration, Taylor series, Laplace transforms, ordinary differential equations, systems of linear equations, polynomials. Scilab: Maths & Simulation, 2-D & 3-D Visualization, Optimization, Statistics, Control System Design & Analysis, Signal Processing, Application Development, Xcos (hybrid dynamic systems modeler and simulator) fully integrated Gnuplot: portable command-line driven graphing utility