Toolpath strategy & generation for robotic fibre placement on curved surfaces

Nahaad Vaheed, Felix Raspall, Rajkumar Velu, Chadurvedi Venkatesan

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


Traditionally, manual-layup technique is used for the manufacturing of composite parts and laminates. Although this technique has its advantages, many of its disadvantages, which include the process being labour-intensive and slow, translates to high production costs. These drawbacks were later overcome with advancements in the field of automation through the introduction of the automated or robotic fibre placement (AFP/RFP) technology. The ability to orient continuous fibres in multiple directions in a precise manner is a noteworthy advantage of the AFP technology, although the technique itself presents challenges. Thus, it is essential that the fibre placement technique is precise and accurate to effectively produce components of complex geometries. In this paper the authors present an approach to use AFP technology to fabricate composites with curvatures, through path planning and placement control of continuous fibres. Particularly, research and development of a toolpath algorithm and its optimization for fibre layup on freeform curved surfaces is conducted. The various stages of the placement process or computational design methodology used in this approach are described, beginning with digital path planning and modelling, followed by programming and simulation, and concluding with tool path generation, and physical part fabrication. The research demonstrates how composites having similar curved contours can be processed with AFP.

Original languageEnglish
StatePublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes
Event22nd International Conference on Composite Materials, ICCM 2019 - Melbourne, Australia
Duration: 11 Aug 201916 Aug 2019


Conference22nd International Conference on Composite Materials, ICCM 2019


  • Fibre Placement
  • Robotic Fabrication
  • Toolpath Generation


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