Smart Composites For Additive Manufacturing: From research to market
Michele Tonizzo, moi composites srl
Abstract: moi plan aims to redefine the manufacturing of composite materials, opening the world of the highest performance class of materials to exploit their mechanical and formal possibilities with shapes, today, unimaginable.
Composite materials are one of the category of materials with the highest mechanical performances in the world, unfortunately today’s manufacturing is still slow and expensive especially on small series. They are mostly used in automotive, aerospace, biomedical, nautical and building, all markets characterized by small series, high added value and the need for extreme customization. On the other hand, Additive Manufacturing is an expanding technology characterized by fast realization without the necessity of tools, therefore very convenient when employed in production of limited series, tailor made objects and small lots, very common in composites manufacturing.
Continuous Fiber Composites Smart Manufacturing is a potentially disruptive process we patented in 2015 as researchers at “Politecnico di Milano” University.
This technology merges the performances of thermosetting composite materials with the potentialities of Additive Manufacturing, it is capable to 3D print high performances parts combining robotics intelligence with digital fabrication.
In February 2018 the start-up “moi composites” is born as the natural evolution of the research made at the Politecnico di Milano university. The spin-off is a design, engineering and on-demand production service for small series and tailor made, high performances objects.
The key benefits of moi’s technology, in the production of not only prototypes, but employable parts, especially in small series or tailor made objects, are:
The digitalization of composite parts by smart algorithms and the realization through robotic arm employing some of the best materials available.
The absence of any mold. This cuts the costs and removes the break-even point for numbers of produced parts that now can be different from each other, opening the way for tailor made objects.
The presence of internal cores that makes the structure stiffer in the desired direction or creates cavities in the desired location, which are common possibility only offered by additive processes.
The optimization of the position and the direction of fibers, removing unnecessary weight (from 30% to 70%), designing accordingly to stresses.
Absence of waste.
Our idea for extending the business worldwide is to create different facilities specialized in a specific application, handling the entire productive process from R&D to production and realize dedicated solutions inside production centers tailored on the application sector.