Automation and Production Technology

Automated assembly and machining of large FRP structures

The Automation and Production Technology department of Fraunhofer IFAM is based at Research Center CFRP North in Stade. The group develops and automates assembly processes for large fiber reinforced plastic (FRP) structures to meet the specific needs of individual customers.

Key activities:

  • Adhesive bonding, bonding processes
  • Shimming, shimming processes
  • Sealing, sealing processes
  • Machining:
    • - Drilling
    • - Milling
    • - Grinding/sanding
    • - Waterjet cutting

With large structures, unavoidable deviations from the specified geometry mean that there is a need for adaptive guidance for automated processes. Software-assisted calibration of actuators – for example industrial robots – in combination with various sensors and optical geometry measurement provide the necessary precision.

Working closely with the experts of Adhesive Bonding Technology and Surfaces at the Fraunhofer IFAM in Bremen, the Automation and Production Technology develops integrated system solutions and optimally adapted production and plant concepts up to large scale plants. For the realization and evaluation of plants on up to a 1:1 scale, a large 80 x 50 m hall is available with a free height of 15 m beneath cranes.

For customers – e. g. in the aviation, aerospace, wind energy, commercial vehicle sectors – this means solutions from a single partner which can be implemented in large applications without further time or cost, so ensuring they remain leaders in innovation and technology.