Through targeted research, the procedure is applied to enable the quick and easy combination of materials. Few upstream process stages are hereby necessary, as the starting materials are simple rovings or yarns and the respective plastic components. We are therefore able to develop new customized material properties and to adapt these individually to the component. With this procedure, we realize a targeted load path-oriented component production. Expensive high-performance fibers should only be processed in the section of the component in which high strength or rigidity is necessary. The remaining zones are covered by other types of fibers (e.g. natural fibers), which have further advantages such as a lower price, good vibration behavior and a superior life cycle assessment.
In addition to the production of components, we are also carrying out research into the reinforcement and stiffening of existing structures. It is therefore possible, for example, for 2D organic sheets to be sprayed with this procedure prior to forming; this leads to increased strength and functionalization. In the case of organic sheet forming, limited draping properties are often the cause of component defects; with the aid of the fiber spraying facility, we can selectively remediate such problems. In addition, existing metal components can be sprayed and reinforced in this way. The wall thicknesses of the metal sheets are thereby reduced, and a higher lightweight construction potential is created.
The fiber spraying facility is located in the Fraunhofer Project Centre Wolfsburg. Within the framework of the “Open Hybrid LabFactory” (OHLF), the entire process chain for lightweight structures in automobiles is developed and tested for large-scale production. The fiber spraying facility is part of the “textile production chain”. It is currently being used, amongst other things, in our research project “ProBio”.